New Delhi: – Defence Minister Raj Nath Singh held a video conference while he inaugurated the Kailash Mansarovar Link Road, connecting Uttarakhand to the Chinese border. Chief of Defence Staff, General Bipin Rawat and Chief of Army Staff, General Manoj Naravane, were present in the conference. The Defence Minister said that this link road would save two weeks of travel time for the pilgrims and their journey will become comfortable. This road has a very high strategic importance for the country. This 80-kilometre road, from Dharchula in Uttarakhand to Lipulekh near the Chinese border, is at the height of 17,000 feet from the sea level.
The construction of this road was a stiff challenge for the Border Roads Organisation (BRO). Defence Minister Raj Nath Singh praised the effort of the BRO saying that the BRO constructed this road in the most adverse conditions. The road starting from Ghatibagarh in Uttarakhand goes up to Lipulekh near the Chinese border. This road is already known as the Kailas Mansarovar road. With the completion of this road, the pilgrims will reach Kailas Mansarovar within a week. Before this, it would take nearly three weeks to reach Kailas Mansarovar. The locals will also benefit from this development. The Defence Minister expressed confidence that this will provide an impetus to the local trade and economy. The military officials informed that this link road would facilitate faster military movements in the region. The first contingent of 9 vehicles was flagged off after the inauguration. This included four small vehicles and one vehicle each from BRO and ITBP. Meanwhile, the link road project had been sanctioned in the year 2008. But the project was delayed due to some reasons. Then, in 2018, budgets were allocated for the project. Thereafter, Union Minister Nitin Gadkari had said that the project would be completed in April 2020.