Impacting the lives of millions from Assam and Meghalaya, the Central Government has given their nod for the construction of the country’s longest bridge giving a major boost to the development of Infrastructure in North-East India.
The bridge to be built over the mighty Brahmaputra bridge which will connect Dhubri with Phulbari is perhaps set to become the longest bridge in India.
The Dhubri-Phulbari bridge to be built on NH 127B was proposed by the National Highways & Infrastructure Development Corporation Ltd. (NHIDC).
Engineering and construction giant Larsen & Toubro Ltd. (L&T) emerged as the lowest bidder at Rs. 3166 crores. the construction giant company is all set to build the 20 km long bridge across the Brahmaputra river. Apart from L&T, another prominent bidder for the project was SP Singla Construction, which is currently constructing the Guwahati-North Guwahati bridge.
Earlier, the Central cabinet gave their nod to build the Dhubri-Phulbari bridge with a budget of Rs. 4,997 Crores under the North-East Network Connectivity Programme.
The construction of the 4-lane bridge project has been financed by JICA (Japan International Cooperation Agency). The proposed bridge will feature extra-dosed spans of 125 meters for almost 13 km and a 60-meter Approach Viaduct of 5.74 km combined with an approach road of almost a kilometer.
It will reduce the detouring distance from Dhubri to Phulbari by about 203 km, both of which lie on either side of the Brahmaputra river. The distance between Dhubri and Phulbari will soon be just 18 km.
At present those who travel across the two states (Assam & Meghalaya) either row across the river in small boats, a two-and-half hours’ journey, or takes the Naranarayan bridge route, which is about 60 km upstream.
According to the Government’s official statement, the Dhubri-Phulbari connecting bridge is set to be completed by 2027. The completion deadline given by the Central government is 7 years and 9 months.
However, when contracted, officials of JICA or L&T refused to give any other information or statement.
This project has strategic and socio-economic importance. The project will serve as a booster in the development of the economically backward districts in the NE states. The bridge will also reduce the traveling time from 5 hours to just 20 minutes between Dhubri and Phulbari.
It will further inflame the transport network for the region providing a shorter link between the western areas of Meghalaya, the Barak Valley region of Assam, and also other southern states in the North-East.