The damaged Mahatma Gandhi Setu, the longest bridge in India which connects north and south Bihar, has become a curse for the people of the state. The 5.8 km long bridge over the Ganga has developed cracks at many points, forcing the authorities to make the road one way, which is causing massive traffic jams on the bridge as well as in Patna and Hajipur that are located at either side of it.
Business to and from Nepal and Bhutan also flows through this bridge. Taking note of the situation, the Union Cabinet last month approved the rehabilitation of the four-lane bridge. With Rs 1,742 crore project cost, the work on its rehabilitation is likely to be inaugurated on 15 August.
It has become a nightmare for the people going from Patna to north Bihar or vice versa. Commuters through this bridge often miss to catch a train due to long traffic jams. The administration has earmarked a separate “truck lane”, to facilitate smooth movement of passenger vehicles. However, this has led to long queues of trucks, many of them having sand, along Patna bypass and Hajipur.