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