AGARTALA: The bridge over the river Feni, called the 'MaitreSetu' connecting South Tripura with Ramgarh of Bangladesh, is also getting India access to the Chittagong seaport, is now all ready to be opened in a few months following the confirmation of the schedule from the Prime Ministers of India and Bangladesh.
Constructed at the sanctioned cost of Rs 128.69 crores, the 1.9-KM-long international standard bridge was started in 2017. However, the construction got delayed due to the Coronavirus pandemic.
The National Highways and Infrastructure Development Corporation Limited (NHDCL) is the project-execution authority.
NHDCL officials, however, said that they will take a month to open the bridge for the movement of vehicles and goods. This will only be done after all the formalities, which also includes the rechecking the safety standard of the work.
A top official of NHDCL also said that they are ready to dedicate the bridge for the nation only when the schedule of PM Narendra Modi and his Bangladesh counterpart Sheikh Hassina match so that both can be a part of the inauguration ceremony. The Tripura government wants the physical presence of both the Prime Ministers, instead of virtual inauguration of the bridge.
Stating that the 'MaitreSetu' is one of the biggest gifts of PM Modi to Northeast India, Tripura Deputy CM Jishnu Dev Varma said that it would provide direct access to the seaports.
This will further open up a new field of development for the Southeast Asian countries. Currently, the only sea trade access point of north-eastern States is the Haldia port.
Varma further said that the 'MaitreSetu' will connect Tripura with Southeast Asia, and also boost the bilateral trades between the countries. Tripura will also become a trade hub and an investment centre for the Southeast Asian countries. (Agencies)