Set to explore river potential, besides culture: Patowary
By our Staff Reporter
GUWAHATI, March 28: State Transport Minister Chandra Mohan Patowary said that mami Brahmaputra is not only a cultural show, exploration of the potentials of Brahmaputra and its tributaries as well.
The minister addressed the on a Row-row, a vessel sailing in the river around Umanda Island. Highlighting the potential of the Brahmaputra, Patowary said that water routes can be used for trade and commerce, and are viable sectors of investment in so far as the Brahmaputra is concerned. “Water routes are cheapest routes compared to other forms of transportation,” he said.
“The dredging of the river will take place from Sadia to Dhubri, and to initiate the process an MoU will be signed on April 4 with the Centre. The Centre will also discuss the dredging of the Brahmaputra from Dhubri to Bangladesh with the Bangladesh Government. The funds will come from Asian Development Bank,” Patowary said.
“With the help of World Bank funding Jogighopa, Pandu, South Salmara, Majuli, Dibrugarh and Badarpur ports will be upgraded to intertiol standards. There are now seven barges in Assam, the number will be made 30 in the coming days.
We’re going to introduce water taxis in Guwahati. Fifty such taxis are coming up. A modern ghat will developed near the airport for the purpose. People boud for the airport will be able to travel in 18 to 20 minutes from Umada by water taxis,” the minister said.
With a view to offering convenience to people, the transport minister has declared special ferries free of cost in Majuli to carry corpses.
Patowary med the newly announced waterways of Assam-Brahmaputra as tiol Water Way(NWW) 2, Barak as NWW 16, Aai river (NWW) 6, Subansiri (NWW) 15, Gangadhar river (NWW) 38, Beki river (NWW) 18, Dihing river (NWW) 13, Dikhou river (NWW) 32, Puthimari river (NWW) 82, Kapili river (NWW) 57 and Dhansiri river (NWW) 31.
The minister said that 101 ghats in either bank of the Brahmaputra will be modified by most modern ways through government of India funding. Reiterating the fact that Assam can be a hub of South East Asia the minister said that if water routes are available for use in Assam, sea routes of Ahmedabad and Mumbai will be connected via Assam to Chitagong Port in Bangladesh. This, in turn, will benefit around 25 crore people, besides alluring investors.
The minister also said that the Centre has provided five small dredgers for dredging the tributaries of the Brahmaputra and 15 vessels will be repaired.