Bridge collapses in Garo hills

The broken wooden bridge at Karukol in South Garo Hills. Telegraph picture

Tura, Oct. 14: A 50metre wooden bridge along National Highway 62 at Karukol in Meghalaya's South Garo Hills collapsed last night, cutting off over 600 villages.

It was one of the longest timber bridges in the Garo hills.

Heavy overnight rain led to a surge in water levels of the Simsang, leading to the collapse of the weak bridge.

The Rongdik bridge over the Simsang connects Nongalbibra and Siju to Baghmara, the district headquarters of South Garo Hills.

Villagers cut off from the district headquarters, 50km away, will now have to travel about 210km to reach Baghmara via Williamnagar and Tura.

Rongara-Siju MLA Rophul S. Marak said he was doing his best to ensure quick repair once the water recedes. "The bridge is the lifeline of the people and will affect everyone who live on both sides of the river. I have spoken to the departments concerned and they have assured me of speedy repairs," said Marak.

Three weeks ago, a bridge in Telekhali and Chokpot region of South Garo Hills had collapsed and the residents were forced to use border roads to reach the nearest markets of Dalu and Tura in West Garo Hills.

Recently, two bridges on the Chokpot-Baghmara road had collapsed at Deku and Chengba between Sibbari and Chokpot. The bridge at Deku was an RCC one.

National Highway 62 in South Garo Hills has about 20 wooden bridges.


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