Bridging the Majuli island: Of long-drawn hopes and vague impediments

The bridge that will connect the biggest river island Majuli with the rest of Assam is under so many debates and controversies.

Some people are of the opinion that as the river is the core of beauty in the wetland, the bridge might degrade the beauty of the place as tourists will no longer take ferry to cross the river. But the dilemma is – does the beauty of the place matters or life too should be given a chance?

The people of Majuli are witness to the trauma that the patients go through. There have been so many cases where a patient dies on the way to the hospital as it takes much long in a ferry. There have been instances of dying pregnant ladies on their way because of lack of treatment.

“I do not support constructing a bridge here. This will lead to thieves, smugglers and immigrants into our serene land,” a man from the indigenous Mishing tribe said. When he was told about the benefits of a bridge connecting the largest river island, he agreed that probably the bridge will bring development to his area and will help them in distress.

As we interacted with the people at the river island, most of the educated people vouched for the bridge as it will lead to development of the place. There were others as well who didn’t want to disturb the beauty of the place by constructing a bridge – a vague justification.

While the bridge is expected to ease life at Majuli, it is also expected to enrich the tourism sector in the island district. The people of Majuli believe that the proposed bridge is giving them hope, after years of struggle.



Kristi Borah is a mass communication student at the Shillong campus of The English and Foreign Languages University. She can be reached through: