Defence Minister Manohar Parrikar had today inaugurated the strategic cable stayed bridge in Jammu and Kashmir. The structure is cited to be a crucial part in the enhanced connectivity between the three states of Punjab, Himachal Pradesh and Jammu and Kashmir. Union Minister of State Jitendra Singh and Army Chief Dalbir Singh Suhag were also present during the function.
The 592 metre Basohli Bridge is built across the Ravi River in Kathua on the Dunera-Basohli-Bhaderwah road. Built by the Border Roads Organization (BRO), it is only the fourth of its kind in India. The other three cable-stayed bridges are Hooghly Bridge at Kolkata, Naini Bridge in Allahabad and Rajiv Gandhi Sea Link in Mumbai.
The built is strategically important from the fact that it reduces the travelling distance from Punjab and Himachal Pradesh, which will also boost the tourism prospects in the region. It was considered to be one of the most challenging ask for the BRO engineers. Agencies from Japan, Canada, Spain and Switzerland were also engaged in the work along with Indian engineers and consultants.
The work was started in September 2011 on the demand of the people of Basohli where over 22 villages were submerged and had to be evacuated to other places after the construction of Ranjit Sagar dam. The total construction cost amounts to Rs 145 crore.