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New Sangupiddy Bridge to Usher an Era of Wasantham to North
[Updated :: 2011-01-17 21:40:50 Hours]

Placing a landmark in the contemporary history of islandís transportation, the newly constructed Sangupidddy bridge which connects Poonaryn in the mainland and the Jaffna peninsula was declared open by His Excellency the President Mahinda Rajapaksa on Sunday (16.01.2011) afternoon.

Completion of the bridge on the A-32 road provides an alternative route from Colombo to Jaffna via Chialw, Puttalam, Silavathirai, Mannar, Poonaryn, Kerathivu and Navatkuli. The new iron bridge which cost the government about Rs. 1037 million is another phase of Jaffna development project under the Uthuru Wasanthaya or Wadakkin Wasantham programme initiated by the government. The 288 m long bridge with a width of 7.4 m cuts short the traveling distance from Puttalam by about 80 km.

Earlier, the residents in nearby areas got their transport requirements fulfilled via Sangupiddy using a ferry service. However, they were deprived of the ferry facility after the terrorists destroyed the famous Sangupiddy jetty in early 90s. Civilians had to spend many hours traveling an extra mileage to reach the both ends lying within a seeing distance less than six kilo metres.

Commissioning of the bridge this weekend will hereafter facilitate transport of passengers and goods from south to north and vice versa promoting trade and commerce in the north and strengthening good relations further between the north and the south. Especially, people in Poonaryn area will find easy way to Chavakachcheri hospital which was recently equipped with many medical facilities under the governmentís northern development programme or even to Jaffna Teaching hospital. In the same way, Jaffna Hindus and Catholics who used to go to Thiruketheeswaram and the Madhu church respectively can resume their journey using the new bridge. On the other hand, agriculture in Poonaryn, popular as granary in the north, and Mannar which encompasses Rice Bawl, will flourish in days to come.

Moreover, this engineering marvel which was completed within 8-12 months will make a history as a Peace Building Bridge.

The opening ceremony at Sangupiddy was attended by Ministers, parliamentarians, service commanders, senior military officers, senior government officials, and a large crowd of people.

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