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Blown up during ’71 war, strategic Hussainiwala bridge thrown open

Hussainiwala bridge was blown up during the 1971 Indo-Pak war to stop advancing armoured units of the enemy forces.

punjab Updated: Aug 12, 2018 22:08 IST
Hindustan Times, Ferozepur
Hussainiwala bridge,1971 Indo-Pak war,Border Roads Organisation
Defence Minister Nirmala Sitharaman inaugurating Hussainiwala bridge in Ferozepur on Sunday.(HT Photo)

Strategically important Hussainiwala bridge, which was blown up during the 1971 Indo-Pak war to stop advancing armoured units of the enemy forces, was thrown open to the public on Sunday by defence minister Nirmala Sitharaman.

Reconstructed by the Border Roads Organisation (BRO) at ₹2.3 crore, the 80-metre-long bridge connects 14 villages, including Ghatti Rajoo Kee, Ghatti Hazara, Tendiwala, Kamalewala, Ghatti Rahime Kee, Jallo Kee, Chandiwala and Khunder Ghatti besides Hussainiwala, across the Sutlej. The work on the bridge started in 2015.

The bridge, located nearly 11 kilometres from the district headquarters, was blown up in 1971 to save Ferozepur by preventing the advancing armoured units of the enemy. Since then, people from the adjoining areas as well as security forces personnel used to cross the river using a bailey bridge.

After inaugurating the bridge, Sitharaman visited the National Martyrs’ Memorial and paid floral tributes to Bhagat Singh, Rajguru and Sukhdev and then interacted with the local army units and villagers.

“The permanent bridge at the Hussainiwala barrage will not only help the armed forces but also the local population while commuting to the other side,” the Union minister said.

“Hussainiwala is a historic and sacred place. It is a great honour for me to inaugurate the bridge. This will lead to development in the state and particularly benefit the people of Ferozepur. It will promote regional prosperity, business, agriculture besides facilitating better movement of army vehicles, ammunition and logistics,” she said during her address.

She said the BRO has constructed nearly 52,000 kilometre roads, 650 large permanent bridges and 19 airfields in difficult and remote areas of the country.

“The strategically important 8.80 km Rohtang tunnel is also being constructed by BRO under challenging environment,” she said.

During her visit, Western Command chief Lt Gen Surinder Singh, BRO director general Lt Gen Harpal Singh and other senior army, police and civil administration officials were present.

Punjab cabinet minister Rana Gurmit Singh Sodhi and local MP Sher Singh Ghubaya gave a memorandum of demands of the area residents to the defence minister.

First Published: Aug 12, 2018 22:07 IST