When Prime Minister Narendra Modi stepped on the Dhola-Sadiya Bridge over river Lohit, he took a swift stroll admiring the beauty – India’s longest bridge on a beautiful terrain – giving an opportunity for the shutterbugs to click-good.
A fortnight since its inauguration, the Bhupen Hazarika Setu, as it was later named, is buzzing with onlookers – mostly stopping midway to admire the beauty and click selfies. The original purpose – to ease traffic flow – often takes a backseat as revellers block the bridge in quest of “the best selfie”.
The new-found tourist attraction is part of the nearby areas’ narrative now. “Have you been to the new bridge…you must go. It’s just about 2 hours from here,” a middle-aged gentleman from Namsai suggested. We were meeting after a gap of a few years and one of the first few sentences were about the Bridge!
Trips-to-the-bridge is a part of the holiday plans as they want to become the first-few to splurge their ‘selfie-on-the-bridge’ on the social media. For others, they are caught in the FOMO syndrome as they actually ‘fear of missing out’ one of the best opportunity to visit The Longest Indian Bridge.
Locals say they witness good number of people from distant areas stopping at the bridge. “We were already planning a trip to Upper Assam and parts of Arunachal Pradesh. The plan got a big push after the bridge opened. And here we are…,” said Guwahati-based advertising professional Kaushik Barman who visited the bridge on Sunday. Travelling with his family from Guwahati, Kaushik’s itinerary included the stop at the bridge as the highlight.
The area near the bridge is hustling with various business activities as visitors throng the bridge for a slice of history. “Food stalls are a common sight as we witnessed the ‘Bridge Mela’,” Kaushik added.
“For us, it was a perfect outing as the new bridge is not very far from where we stay. Not just the selfies, we enjoyed spending time on the structure which adds to the scenic beauty of the place,” said Jyotsna Saikia who visited the bridge along with her friends from Bordumsa in Arunachal Pradesh.
Prime Minister Narendra Modi inaugurated the India’s longest 9.15-km long Bhupen Hazarika Setu across river Lohit on May 26.
Barely three days after the inauguration, two residents of Meseki village, who were travelling from Dhola to Sadiya, accidentally hit one of the temporary camps with their speeding motorcycle on May 29 night. Arup Buragohain, 27, lost his left arm in the accident while Dhirenjyoti Chiring, 18 sustained some injuries.
Caution is the key!