Track opens for Mailung-Syabrubesi road sectionThe track opening of a section of the shortest India-Nepal-China overland route, which will run from Thori on Nepal’s southern border to Rasuwagadhi on the northern border, has been completed. The 17-km Mailung-Syabrubesi section was constructed by the Nepal Army.
The track opening of a section of the shortest India-Nepal-China overland route, which will run from Thori on Nepal’s southern border to Rasuwagadhi on the northern border, has been completed. The 17-km Mailung-Syabrubesi section was constructed by the Nepal Army.
The entire highway linking Nepal’s northern and southern borders will be 230 km long when completed. The road will start at Thori in Parsa, and continue to Bhandara in Chitwan and then link Galchhi, Betrawati and Mailung before ending at Syabrubesi. If the project doesn’t encounter any obstacles, automobiles are expected to start plying the highway from mid-April. Once the double-lane road is constructed, one will be able to drive from Kathmandu to Kerung in China in 4 hours.
The national pride project has been deemed as a strategic road network connecting the southern and northern neighbours. The plan was initiated following a five-month border blockade by India in 2015 which convinced the government of the need to open multiple border points with China to ensure deliveries of fuel and other essentials if the southern supply lines are cut off.
With the track opening complete, the construction of a double-lane road began which has reached the final stages of completion. According to officials, work needs to be done on only a 600-metre section. The highway passes though varied geography and parts of it are up to 11 metres wide.
“We have planned to hand over the project to the government by mid-April,” said Nepal Army engineer Colonel Ram Dhar Singh. The army has set up camps at eight locations in Mailung, Gumchet, Solee, Trishuli Dobhan and Syabru to speed up the project.
Currently, 190 army personnel and 350 civilian workers are working on the project to meet the completion target, said Major Sanjay KC. In December 2015, the Cabinet decided to hand over the task of constructing the Mailung-Syabrubesi segment to the army.
When the road is complete, it will shorten the distance between Betrawati and Syabrubesi by 24 km compared to the existing Betrawati-Kalikasthan-Dhunche-Syabrubesi route of the Pasang Lhamu Highway.
According to army officials, the Roads Department will blacktop the highway after it is handed over to the government. The department is planning to complete the upgradation and construction of the Galchhi-Mailung section by March 2019, the deadline set by the government.
The stretch from Galchhi in Dhading to Rasuwagadhi is 84 km. The distance from Galchhi to Kathmandu is 50 km.
This road is key to implementing the Transit Transport Agreement signed between Nepal and China during the then prime minister KP Sharma Oli’s visit to Beijing in 2016.