In­au­gu­ra­tion of the newly built bridge, Wangchuck Zam, over Kuri-Gon­gri at Yang­bari un­der Gongdu Ge­wog, Mon­gar

Bhutan Times - - Home - Staff Re­porter

His Royal High­ness Gyalt­shab Jigme Dorji Wangchuck graced the in­au­gu­ra­tion of the newly built bridge, Wangchuck Zam, over Kuri-Gon­gri at Yang­bari un­der Gongdu Ge­wog, Mon­gar on 2nd July cor­re­spond­ing to the 15th day of the 5th Bhutanese month.

The pro­gramme in­cluded Lhab­sang Thru­soel cer­e­mony, Tashi Rab­ney of the bridge, in­au­gu­ra­tion of the bridge and cul­tural pro­gramme. HRH met over 1000 peo­ple from Yang­bari, Daksa and Ku­ma­zong un­der Gongdu Ge­wog, Mon­gar Dzongkhag and Mikuri un­der Dung­min Ge­wog and Nyaskar un­der Chimung Ge­wog, Pema Gat­shel Dzongkhag, and granted Tokha from His Majesty The King. The peo­ple of­fered Tshogchang and Buelwa com­pris­ing of lo­cal farm pro­duces.

Other guests present were Gau­tam Bam­bawale, Am­bas­sador of In­dia to Bhutan, Ly­onpo Jigme Zangpo, Speaker, Na­tional Assem­bly of Bhutan, Ly­onpo Dorji Cho­den, Min­istry of Works & Hu­man Set­tle­ment, mem­bers of Par­lia­ment from Mon­gar and Pema Gat­shel Dzongkhags, Dzongdags of other five eastern Dzongkhags, lo­cal lead­ers and of­fi­cials from dif­fer­ent agen­cies in Thim­phu

The 128 m (400 feet) span bai­ley-sus­pen­sion bridge over Kuri-Gon­gri at Yang­bari is one of the long­est in the coun­try. Its con­struc­tion was ini­ti­ated in May 2013 with the award of con­struc­tion of abut­ment to M/s. Tacho Con­struc­tion. This part was com­pleted in De­cem­ber 2014.

Launch­ing of steel parts was car­ried out by Con­struc­tion De­vel­op­ment Cor­po­ra­tion Lim­ited. In spite of the job be­ing highly spe­cial­ized and risky, given the size and span of the bridge, it was com­pleted in a record time of three months of March, April and May 2015.

The to­tal cost of Nu. 57.64 mil­lion was pro­vided by Gov­ern­ment of In­dia , which in­cludes steel parts Nu. 19.06 mil­lion supplied by M/s Gar­den Reach Ship­builders & Engi­neers Lim­ited, Kolkotta; abut­ment Nu. 35.275 mil­lion and launch­ing of steel parts Nu. 3.362 mil­lion.

The bridge will con­nect the two Gewogs of Gongdu and Sil­ambi to Nanglam and to the Dzongkhag Head quar­ter in Mon­gar when the on­go­ing farm road con­struc­tion is com­pleted in June 2016. Presently, of 105 km or so long road, 87 km have been con­structed. Only about 18 km re­main to be done. The road is be­ing built from both Yang­bari and Mon­gar sides with GOI sup­port, and on com­ple­tion, will open up vil­lages and com­mu­ni­ties spread over an area of some 350 sq km.

Gondu and Sil­ambi with 675 house­holds and a pop­u­la­tion of about 6,673, though en­dowed with rich nat­u­ral re­sources and fa­vor­able cli­matic con­di­tions, are the two most un­der­de­vel­oped Gewogs in the Dzongkhag. The bridge and road will bring im­mea­sur­able so­cial and eco­nomic ben­e­fits to the two Gewogs, es­pe­cially since the bridge will now pro­vide them with ac­cess to not only bet­ter health and ed­u­ca­tion ser­vices but also vast mar­kets in In­dia while also dras­ti­cally re­duc­ing cost of es­sen­tial items im­ported.

At the na­tional level, the bridge opens up many op­por­tu­ni­ties. For in­stance, the two Gewogs are rich in flora and fauna. It should be a par­adise for tourists in­ter­ested in na­ture, wild life and river sports. Fur­ther, it will fa­cil­i­tate im­ple­men­ta­tion of the pro­posed mega Kuri-Gon­gri Hy­dropower Pro­ject as and when it is taken up.

The bridge is, there­fore, of im­mense na­tional im­por­tance and is be­ing ded­i­cated to the cel­e­bra­tions of the 60th Birth An­niver­sary of His Majesty Jigme Singye Wangchuck the 4th Druk Gyalpo. It is in­deed a be­fit­ting trib­ute to the vi­sion­ary monarch whose most im­por­tant pre­oc­cu­pa­tion has been en­sur­ing that all his sub­jects ben­e­fit equally from the na­tion’s progress and de­vel­op­ment

Later in the evening, HRH the Gyalt­shab vis­ited the fac­to­ries of Dun­sam Ce­ment Cor­po­ra­tion Lim­ited and Dungsam Poly­mer Lim­ited in Nganglam, and in­spected the ac­tiv­i­ties and prod­ucts of the two com­pa­nies.

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