The Border Roads Organization (BRO) is nearing the completion of the Sela tunnel in Arunachal Pradesh, which is set to become the world’s longest twin-lane tunnel above 13,000 feet. This significant infrastructure project is expected to allow for the swift deployment of troops and weaponry to forward areas in Tawang, aligning with India’s heightened focus on enhancing infrastructure along its border with China.

The foundation stone for the ₹700 crore Sela tunnel, located on the Balipara-Charduar-Tawang (BCT) road, was laid by Prime Minister Narendra Modi in February 2019. Despite some delays, including damage from cloudbursts and landslides during the rainy season, the project is now nearing completion and is anticipated to be ready in the coming weeks. The defense ministry is planning to seek time from Prime Minister Modi for the inauguration of the Sela tunnel.

The completion of the Sela tunnel is of strategic significance as it will address the logistical challenges posed by the 14,000 feet-high Sela pass, which experiences severe disruptions in winter, affecting the movement of personnel, equipment, and supplies for several months each year. The tunnel is expected to significantly reduce travel time to Tawang by at least one hour and provide all-weather connectivity.

Additionally, another crucial infrastructure project in the region, the Nechiphu tunnel, is scheduled to be inaugurated next week. The 500-meter tunnel, situated at an altitude of 5,700 feet on the BCT road in West Kameng, is expected to further enhance connectivity.

The BRO’s accelerated construction pace reflects its commitment to bolstering border infrastructure and military readiness in remote regions. It has completed numerous infrastructure projects, including bridges, roads, and helipads, with plans to complete more in the near future to strengthen connectivity and support military operations along the border areas.

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