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Current Affairs 2023

Maitri Setu - UPSC Current Affairs

Maitri Setu is a 1.9-km- long bridge linking Tripura in India with Chittagong port in Bangladesh, providing landlocked North East India with access to the sea and enabling the transport of heavy machines and goods to North East India via Bangladesh.

Feb 14, 2023

2 min read

Maitri Setu is a 1.9-km- long bridge built across the Feni River, connecting Tripura in India with the Chittagong port in Bangladesh. The bridge was officially opened to the public on March 9, 2021, by the Prime Ministers of India and Bangladesh. The cost of constructing the bridge and its approach roads was borne by India, and the NHIDCL was appointed to execute the project.

 

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The Maitri Setu plays a crucial role in connecting landlocked North East India with the sea, providing access to the Chittagong port and enabling the transport of heavy machinery and goods to North East India via Bangladesh. The bridge is also a major trade route to Northeast India, with the Chittagong port just 80 kilometers away from the border.

 

The bridge's significance lies in its economic role, as it provides a shorter and more economical alternate land route between India's eastern and western states compared to the longer route through Assam. The land route between Agartala and Kolkata Port through this bridge is just 450 kilometers via Bangladesh, compared to the 1600-kilometer land route via the Siliguri Corridor. As a result, logistics cost from Agartala to Kolkata Port will be 80% lower, compared to the Siliguri Corridor, if the goods are sent through this bridge via Chattogram Port 200 kilometers away.

 

In the future, a rail link extension to Chittagong Port and Cox's Bazar deep water port in Bangladesh is planned. It will provide strategic redundancy and an alternative to the Kaladan Multi-Modal project route in case of a war with China. Overall, the Maitri Setu symbolizes the growing friendship and bilateral ties between India and Bangladesh and is poised to play a critical role in transforming the economic landscape of Northeast India.

 

Image: Google Earth

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