The biggest problem with our Media is that they keep on publishing and spreading negativity about our Nation, and when we get something to celebrate, they either ignore it or publish it in such a way that it seems they are demeaning it rather than appreciating it.
Today we will talk about an achievement of India, which not many people are aware of, or we can say not being celebrated much by media and other sections.
India’s Border Roads Organisation has recently constructed the highest motorable road in the world while breaking the previous record held by Bolivia. This road sits at an unprecedented height of 19,300 feet and it passes through Umlingla Pass in Eastern Ladakh. It is a black-topped, 52-kilometer road that connects many important towns in the Chumar sector of Eastern Ladakh.
The altitude of this road is higher than the base camps of Mount Everest as the South Base Camp in Nepal is situated at an altitude of 17,598 ft, while the North Base Camp in Tibet is at 16,900 feet. This road is much above the altitude of Siachen Glacier which is at 17,700 ft.
The road offers an alternative direct route connecting Chisumle and Demchok from Leh and will be of great significance to promote tourism in Ladakh and ensure round the year connectivity to our forces.
It was such a massive achievement, that Guinness World Records admitted it in their world record books and provided a world record certificate on November 16, 2021, for constructing and blacktopping the world’s highest motorable road at 19,024 feet at Umlingla Pass in Ladakh.
The DGBR was awarded the Guinness World Record via a virtual ceremony, in which an official adjudicator based in the United Kingdom, Rishi Nath acknowledged the remarkable BRO’s achievement. It took a four-month-long process by the Guinness World Records, and five different surveyors verified the claim before awarding the record to BRO.
How this road was made?
The strategic road built under ‘Project Himank’ passes through the Umling La Top and connects Chisumle and Demchok villages. The road is close to the Line of Actual Control (LAC) and will allow quick movement of troops and equipment.
The 52-km Chisumle-Demchok road which includes Umling La pass was connected three years back by completing the formation work. The work includes completion of sub-base layers which include non-frost susceptible sub-base (NFSSB), layering of Dense Bitumen Macadam (DBM), and Bituminous Concrete (BC) works, two Bailey bridges of span 120 ft and 140 ft respectively, and other permanent works.
A defense official said the road construction has a number of phases and while the project had been underway since 2017, only a rough cut was made. Now the complete layers including top blacktopping have been done recently.
Here it is important to note that infrastructure development at such a tough and harsh terrain is extremely challenging. During the winter, the temperature dips to -40 degrees, and the oxygen level at this altitude is almost 50 percent less than at normal places. The BRO has achieved the feat due to the grit and resilience of its personnel who work in treacherous terrain and extreme weather conditions.
What is BRO?
The Border Roads Organisation is a road construction executive force in India. It provides support to and is a part of the Indian Armed Forces. BRO develops and maintains road networks in India’s border areas and friendly neighboring countries.
Why this achievement is not celebrated much?
Well, this feat is undoubtedly a daunting one and it showcases the marvel of Indian engineering and expertise, but you might not have seen much noise about it in our media. Just assume what would have been their response if there was a tragedy or Chinese incursion in this area? They would have published thousands of articles and posts about it, but as this is an achievement of India, they are just downplayed it.