Bogibeel Bridge in Assam is no longer a dream; it has been inaugurated and dedicated to the nation. Considered as India’s longest railroad bridge, the 4.94km double-decker structure spans over the river Brahmaputra connecting Dibrugarh and Dhemaji districts of the state. Bogibeel Bridge will prove to be a lifeline for the many people living in Assam and Arunachal Pradesh. It will cater to both rail and road traffic and can be thought of as a Christmas gift for the five million people living in those two states because it will cut the commuting time by four hours.
The bridge has been a dream for generations, and now that it is a reality, it will link two important existing national highways NH-37 on the south bank and NH-52 on the north bank, besides providing rail connectivity. It will also be beneficial in the national security of east India by facilitating swift movement of military personnel and equipment.
The bridge comprises a three-lane road on the top and a double-line railway track on the lower deck. The foundation of the project was laid by former Prime Minister H.D. Deve Gowda in January 1997, but the work began in April 2002 under former Prime Minister Atal Bihari Vajpayee’s governance. The project missed several deadlines, before finally being open to the public.
For the Indian Army, the Bogibeel Bridge is a strategic infrastructure that dramatically cuts rail travel time to the Dibang and Lohit river valleys in eastern Arunachal Pradesh. Earlier, military troops and equipment had to cross Brahmaputra, and Arunachal rivers like the Lohit, that too on barges and rafts. The nearest railway bridge at Guwahati was more than 400km away, while Tezpur had only a road bridge. Now, trains can cross the Brahmaputra at Bogibeel and then travel further east on the new Strategic Link, making life super easy for the ones who need it the most.