Mailung-Syaphrubesi road section closed for safety reasonThe newly-constructed Mailung-Syaphrubesi section of the shortest India-Nepal-China overland route is unlikely to come into operation immediately due to safety reason.
The newly-constructed Mailung-Syaphrubesi section of the shortest India-Nepal-China overland route is unlikely to come into operation immediately due to safety reason.
On May 20, the Nepal Army handed over the 17 km double-lane stretch to the government. The government has barred public vehicles from plying on the newly-constructed road due to the potential risk of rockslide, according to the project. “We have been verifying the safety of the road,” said Subodh Kumar Devkota, chief of the project. “The detailed project report of the road will be finalised within a week. As per the plan, we will be issuing tender for blacktopping of the road by mid-June,” he said, adding that the complete upgradation works would begin after the monsoon or by September-end.
Nepal and China had signed an agreement several years ago to upgrade the section of the highway that connects the two countries. In December 2016, Nepal and China signed a Rs15.7 billion (RMB 1 billion) bilateral assistance agreement.
With the new track, the Galchhi-Trishuli-Mailung-Syaphrubesi-Rasuwagadi route has become the shortest link to China from Kathmandu. The newly constructed track is 25 km shorter than the Kalikasthan-Dhunchhe-Syaprubesi route.
The highway linking Nepal’s two immediate neighbours—India and China—is 230 km long. The road starts at Thori in Parsa, passes through Bhandara in Chitwan and connects with Galchhi, Betrawati and Mailung before leading to Syaprubesi.
The national pride project has been deemed as a strategic road network. The project was initiated following a five-month border blockade imposed by India in 2015, which made the government work on multiple links with the northern neighbour to ensure delivery of fuel and other essentials when supplies from the south were blocked. This road is key to implementing the Transit Transport Agreement signed between Nepal and China during Oli’s earlier visit to Beijing in 2016.
With the opening of the Mailung-Syaphrubesi road, drive from Kathmandu to Kerung in China will be of about 4 hours. The stretch from Galchhi in Dhading to Rasuwagadhi is 84 km. The distance from Galchhi to Kathmandu is 50 km.