Defence Minister Rajnath Singh Thursday inaugurated six bridges in border areas of Jammu and Kashmir to provide seamless connectivity to the people of the region and ensure logistical supply and strategic deployment of the armed forces.
The bridges range from 30-300 metres and have been built at a cost of Rs 44.55 crores by the Border Roads Organisation (BRO). Two of these bridges are on the Tarnah Nallah in Kathua District while other four on the Akhnoor-Pallanwala road in Jammu district.
The inauguration of the bridges comes when India and China are engaged in a border row in eastern Ladakh.
Speaking on the occasion, Singh said, “These bridges will facilitate the movement of the armed forces in these strategically important sectors and also contribute towards the overall economic growth of remote border areas.”
He complimented all ranks of BRO for completing these bridges in record time, adding that these are lifelines in far-flung areas close to the border.
Singh said the government is regularly monitoring the progress of all BRO projects and adequate funds are being given for their timely execution.
“Continued construction of roads and bridges in the border areas of the country with total commitment by BRO would help in realisation of the efforts of the government to reach the remotest areas. Roads are the lifeline of any nation,” he said.
Roads in the border areas are not only strategic strengths, but also act to connect remote areas with the mainstream, he added
In this way, be it a strategic necessity of the armed forces or other development work related to health, education, trade, all these are possible only with connectivity, he said.
Thanking the people of the UT for their cooperation, the defence minister said, “I am sure that the construction of modern roads and bridges will bring prosperity to the region. Our government is committed to promoting infrastructure on our borders and necessary resources will be provided for this. Our government has a keen interest in the development of Jammu and Kashmir. Keeping in mind the need of the people of Jammu and Kashmir and Armed Forces, many other development works are also in the pipeline, which will be announced in due time. About 1,000 kilometre long roads are currently under construction in Jammu region.”
He acknowledged that over the last two years, with the use of latest technologies and state-of-the-art equipment, the BRO has done cutting of over 2,200 kilometres about 4,200 kilometres of roads surfacing and about 5,800 metres of permanent bridges have been constructed.
Minister of State in the PMO Dr Jitendra Singh, who had been the main person behind ensuring fast track approval of the projects, was also present during that inauguration which was done through video conferencing.
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