Centre approves strategic tunnel under Brahmaputra river

Guwahati: – The union government has given permission to start work on the strategically important project to build a tunnel under the Brahmaputra river. This is the first tunnel being built under a river in India. This will ensure that the states of Assam and Arunachal Pradesh are connected round the year. This will also expedite the movement of defence equipment and other supplies for the Indian Army units, posted on the Chinese border. Therefore, it is evident that India has taken the security of the Chinese border very seriously.   

This tunnel will connect Gohpur and Numaligarh towns of Assam. China is building a tunnel under the Taihu Lake in the Jiangsu province. It is claimed that the tunnel being built under the Brahmaputra river is longer than the Chinese tunnel. As per a report published, quoting an official from ‘National Highway and Infrastructure Development Corporation’ (NHIDCL), the tunnel will be 14.5 kilometres long. The union government sanctioned the project in March. Whereas, the go-ahead for the construction of the tunnel has been given now.   

The NHIDCL will be collaborating with the US company Louis Berger for the construction work and the work will start in December. The NHIDCL officer said that the work would be carried out in three phases. The Indian military had submitted a proposal to construct the tunnel under the Brahmaputra river, similar to the tunnel under the British channel. The reason is that the enemy can easily target the bridge over the Brahmaputra river. The military suggested that in this scenario, the security of Arunachal Pradesh will be ensured. Thereafter, the union government approved the project.   

China has become restless because of the expeditious moves made by India for developing infrastructure in the border areas. As per analysts, this was one of the reasons for the Chinese aggression in the Ladakh region. The works for infrastructure development, strategically important roads, bridges and railway projects have been accelerated in Ladakh, Arunachal Pradesh, Himachal Pradesh, Sikkim along with Assam. This has increased the capabilities of the Indian military. China has been agitated because with these infrastructural facilities, the Indian military will be capable of a speedy retaliation in case of a conflict.  

The works being carried out in the border area on the bridges and roads had not been stopped even after the Chinese betrayal in Galwan, which could have culminated into a conflict. Whereas, some bridges were completed in record time. The projects are being accelerated further, following the Galwan incident. Meanwhile, Broad Gauge railway tracks are being laid, in Ladakh, reaching up to the Chinese border. Bilaspur-Manali-Leh will be the route and the levelling work has been completed on the route. It is reported that after that, work for laying tracks from Bilaspur station has been undertaken.   

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