Brahmaputra requires more Ro-Ro vessels
Inland Waterways Authority of India (IWAI) has started a new Roll-on-Roll off (Ro-Ro) facility in collaboration with the Government of Assam to provide the much-needed connectivity for Majuli Island.
The Ro-Ro facility will cut down the circuitous road route of 423-km that trucks take from Neamati to Majuli Island via Tezpur Road Bridge, by limiting the distance to only 12.7-km with the use of river route.
IWAI has procured a new vessel MV Bhupen Hazarika for Rs.9.46 crore and is providing the terminal infrastructure. The 46.5-metre-long, 13.3-metre-wide vessel has the carrying capacity of eight trucks and 100 passengers.
IWAI is also planning to procure more such Ro-Ro vessels for use on river Brahmaputra.
Majuli is one of the biggest riverine islands in the world located on river Brahmaputra and faces serious challenges of connectivity. It has 144 villages with a population of over 150,000.
The commencement of Ro-Ro services to Majuli island would be a landmark event towards augmenting connectivity not only in Assam but the entire North Eastern Region.
Currently, there are only four road bridges across river Brahmaputra – at Jogighopa, Guwahati, Tezpur and Sadiya – for connectivity between southern and northern parts of Assam.
IWAI also has a similar Ro-Ro service between Dhubri and Hatsingimari which reduced travel distance by 190-km. The service has a permanent Ro-Ro terminal at Dhubri.
Floating terminals have also been constructed at 11 locations along the length of the Brahmaputra waterway. These are at Hatsingimari, Dhubri, Jogighopa, Tezpur, Silghat, Biswanathghat, Neamati, Sengajan, Bogibeel, Dibugarh/ Oakland and Oriumghat. fiinews.com