Pasighat, June 29: In yet another setback for the people of Siang district and Upper Siang District after Tans-Arunachal Highway connecting Pasighat and Pangin/Boleng was cut off near Rottung village, some 36.6 KM from Pasighat on Sunday, another lifeline bridge over Siyom river, popularly called Sanggam bridge due to location of the bridge at the confluence of Siyom and Siang river, collapsed today morning at around 8.30 am.
As per Atul Tayeng, Dy. Commissioner, Siang District, the incident of Sanggam bridge in Pasighat Arunachal collapse took place at around 8.30 am this morning due to an overload dumper truck laden with chips, crushed stone. The truck with three persons also fell in the river whose dead bodies are still untraceable. The three persons are said to be from Assam.
Tayeng also informed that NDRF and SDRF have been requisited and they search for the dead bodies. The persons who fell into the river with dumper truck death are said to be a Boro, Sutrodar and a Tamang title whose full names are yet to confirm.
Meanwhile, DC Siang has directed a magisterial enquiry into the bridge collapse incident after paying a visit to the incident sites today morning along with Ojing Tasing, MLA Pangin-Boleng and Supt.of Police.
Sanggam bridge despite being the only one connectivity, the lifeline of the people of the upper Adi belt upto the Indo-China border was miserably noticed to be completely neglected by the BRTF authority for the past many years. This bailey suspension bridge over river Siyom located at Siyom-Siang confluence in Siang district was terribly observed to be outdated or expired in layman words by every commuter who is bound to pass through this weak bridge, said Joluk Minung, President, Adi Baane Kebang Youth Wing, the youth wing of Adi Baane Kebang (the apex & appellate body of the Adi tribes).
The same bridge whose foundation was inaugurated in the year 1967 just after 5 years of Chinese aggression in 1962 was once washed away by the massive unnatural flood that occurred on 11th June 2000. When the road connectivity was totally cut off strategically as felt by the defence ministry then, the same bridge was again restored within two months by installing the old and used bridge equipment with the same foundation. Since then there was no proper maintenance and repairing of this bridge by the BRTF authority despite its strategic importance, added Minung.
This weak bridge which has now completely collapsed should have been properly manned with a strict statutory warning for its maximum load capacity. BRTF authorities are completely responsible for the collapse of this Sangam Bridge. In comparison, this Sangam Bridge is much more important than the newly inaugurated Simang Bridge. First priority should have been given to Sanggam bridge to construct an RCC bridge.
The Defence Ministry of India should have also realised the strategic importance of this bridge through which only daily ration items along with heavy arms and ammunition are transported for the Indian army manning the Indo-China border, resented Minung while blaming the BRTF for neglecting the construction of the collapsed bailey suspension bridge, Sanggam.
Meanwhile, the incessant rain in the region has caused massive destruction in many parts including blocking of National Highway-52 from Pasighat-Roing and also Pasighat-Mariyang in Trans Arunachal Highway.