Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Tuesday will flag off the first passenger train passing through the Bogibeel bridge, which will be country's longest rail-cum-road bridge. The 4.94-km-long Bogibeel Bridge is a strategically important project that lies over the mighty Brahmaputra at Bogibeel. The project was a part of the Assam Accord and sanctioned in 1997-98, and is likely to play a crucial role in defence movement along the India-China border in Arunachal Pradesh.
The foundation stone of the project was laid by former prime minister HD Deve Gouda on January 22, 1997, while work commenced on April 21, 2002, under the Atal Bihari Vajpayee-led government.
There are five things to know about Bogibeel Bridge
# The Tinsukia-Naharlagun Intercity Express will run five days a week. The 4.9-km bridge will cut down the train-travel time between Tinsukia in Assam to Naharlagun town of Arunachal Pradesh by more than 10 hours. It will take five-and-a-half hours compared to the 15-20 hours it currently takes. Passengers had to change trains multiple times and take a long-winded route.
# The 14-coach chair-car train will depart from Tinsukia in the afternoon. It will leave from Naharlagun the next morning.
# The Bogibeel bridge connects the south bank of the Brahmaputra river in Assam's Dibrugarh district with Silapathar in Dhemaji district, bordering Arunachal Pradesh.
# The bridge and the train will be a boon for the people of Dhemaji as major hospitals, medical colleges and airport are in Dibrugarh, the third-largest city in the Northeast. It will also help the people of Itanagar as it is just over 15 km from Naharlagun.
# The December 25, the inauguration day, is the birth anniversary of late prime minister Atal Bihari Vajpayee and observed as the 'Good Governance Day' by the Centre.
(With PTI inputs)