Kashmir Indepth

Siachen region to get modern roads, new bridge

Leh, Sep 9 (PTI) A massive plan to modernise all roads and construct new ones leading to the Siachen glacier, the world’s highest battlefield, has been launched in the Ladakh sector for faster movement of troops and equipment, according to officials.

Prepare for the greatest experience after eating a nutritious breakfast. You will travel over some of the highest passes in the world on your adventure, and you will be greeted by ever-changing vistas of the desolate landscape. Stop at the café on Khardung-La Pass, the highest all-season motorable road in the world, and take in the scenery; you'll feel as though you're on top of the world. Upon leaving Khardung-la, the terrain changes to a white sand desert as you approach the Nubra Valley, which is home to the Nubra Sand Dunes. Visit the Diskit Monastery, the oldest and biggest monastery in Ladakh, which also contains a sizable Buddha statue, if time permits.

Under Project Vijayak, the Border Roads Organisation is constructing and modernising roads from Panamic to Siachen base camp and all other interior roads that lead to the Siachen glacier, they said.

New methods and technology are being employed in the project so that the roads can withstand adverse climatic conditions which prevail in the region throughout the year, an official said.

“It is not easy to operate in these weather conditions where temperature dips to minus 10-15 degrees during summer and carry on construction activities,” he said.

Blacktopping of all roads in the strategic sector has been going on despite hostile weather and topography. The roads are motorable and can transport soldiers, materials and heavy machinery towards the strategic Siachen, according to officials.

“Our men faced lot of difficulties to operate machines while blacktopping the roads. The hot-mix plants need to be shifted regularly to operate near the spot so that the material does not lose its temperature and quality, the official said.

The BRO is also planning to construct a new bridge at Siachen Base to replace the suspension bridge so to avoid any hiccups in carrying heavy material to far off areas, the officials said.

“This is the second in the series of bridges to be constructed on the important axis which could revolutionise movement in the world highest battlefield,” another official said.

The modernisation of roads in the strategic sector will continue till it fulfils the needs and requirements of the defence forces and the locals, the official said.

Construction and modernisation of roads in the Siachen sector is a big achievement given the extreme adverse weather and topography of the region. But we are committed to achieve our targets, he said.

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