Sela Tunnel Milestone Blast

  • | Thursday | 14th October, 2021


New Delhi, Oct. 14: As China lodged its customary protest over the recent visit of the Vice-president, Mr. Venkaiah Naidu, to Arunachal Pradesh,  India has given a befitting reply to Beijing both in words and deed.

While a spokesman of the Ministry of External Affairs minced no words in telling Beijing not to comment on the visit of Indian leaders to Arunachal Pradesh, the Defence Ministry achieved another milestone by bolstering its defence on the Sino-Indian border by blasting the main tube of the Sela Tunnel yesterday.

India had neglected infrastructure development on its northern border for decades. After Mr Narendra Modi became Prime Minister in 2014, the development of the border States, especially those contiguous with China and Pakistan were accorded top priority.

The Defence Minister, Mr. Rajnath Singh, who virtually presided over an event to mark the formal breakthrough blast of the main tube of the Sela tunnel yesterday said that the completion of the strategically located tunnel in the East Kameng district of Arunachal Pradesh would play a crucial role in the socio-economic development of the region.    

Perched at an altitude of 13,800 ft., Sela pass on the 317 km-long Balipara-Charduar-Tawang (BCT) road that connects West Kameng, East Kameng and Tawang districts of Arunachal Pradesh to the rest of the country. It reduces travel time and provides all-weather connectivity to Tawang.

Mr. Singh lauded the Border Roads Organisation (BRO) for its significant contribution to the progress of the nation by constructing roads, bridges, tunnels and airfields at record altitudes under extreme weather conditions.

He said the efforts of the BRO to strengthen border infrastructure have enhanced the operational readiness of the armed forces, encouraged tourism in far-flung areas and generated employment for the local population. This state-of-the-art tunnel will prove to be a lifeline for not just Tawang but the entire state, he added.

The Defence Minister made special mention of the construction of the Atal Tunnel, Rohtang, which is the world’s longest highway tunnel at 10,000 feet and Umlingla Pass, the highest motorable pass in the world at 19,300 feet in eastern Laddakh. He said these recent achievements of BRO have become a subject of study for the whole world.

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