Traffic chaos continues to make life miserable for the capital’s denizens. The ongoing construction of the four-lane highway in Itanagar and repairing of the Barapani bridge over the Pachin river in Naharlagun is causing massive traffic jams in the twin towns of Itanagar and Naharlagun. The worst sufferers are students and office goers. The situation is so bad that at times the commuters get stuck in traffic for hours together. A PWD official had recently informed that it is going to take at least a month to complete the repairing work on the Barapani bridge.
At present there is a single bridge that connects Naharlagun and Itanagar towns. Therefore, there is a lot of pressure on Barapani bridge. Two more bridges planned over the Pachin river, near the Naharlagun helipad and Lekhi, are yet to be completed. The ongoing traffic congestion due to the maintenance of the Barapani bridge should be an eye opener for the state government. There is an urgent need to construct more bridges in order to ease traffic congestion on NH 415. The second and third phase of the four-lane highway construction from Papu Nallah to Nirjuli and Nirjuli to Banderdewa is going to commence soon. Before the work starts, the state government should give priority to completing two bridges, namely, the Borum-Naharlagun helipad bridge and the Yupia-Lekhi railway bridge. These two bridges will immensely ease traffic congestion on NH 415. Further, the government should conduct more surveys to find alternative routes with a long-term plan to decongest traffic on NH 415 in Itanagar and Naharlagun.