Staff Reporter: Minister for Road Transport and Bridges Obaidul Quader has said that the work of Padma Bridge, the dream of the people of South Janapad, has been completed by 98 percent.
He told reporters at the Setu Bhaban in Banani on Wednesday afternoon, “A number of issues have been decided at the board meeting of the bridge department today. The most priority project is the Padma Bridge.
“We are preparing to inaugurate the Padma Bridge by the end of next month (June). We will send the inauguration summary to Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina. The Padma Bridge will be inaugurated on the day he gives time in June. “
Asked if the bridge would be inaugurated on June 23, the founding anniversary of the Awami League, he said, “I am talking about my responsibilities as the bridge minister. I have said that it will be inaugurated at the end of June, not on the 23rd. “
Informing about the progress of the construction work, he said that about 98 percent of the work of the 6.15 km main bridge has been completed. The overall progress of the project is 93.50 percent. The work of river governance has been completed 92 percent. 91 percent of the carpeting work of the bridge has been completed.
In April, Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina said in response to a question from the National Assembly that the Padma Bridge would be opened to traffic by the end of this year.
However, on May 5, Obaidul Quader told reporters at his home in Noakhali’s Kompaniganj Upazila that the date for the inauguration of the Padma Bridge had not been postponed. The Padma Bridge will be inaugurated next June.
The Prime Minister inaugurated the construction of the main bridge and river governance work in this project worth TK 30,193 crore in December 2015. Then on September 30, 2017, the first span was placed on the poles number 37 and 38.
If soft soil is found under 22 poles, the design needs to be modified. It takes extra time, about a year.
Then coronavirus epidemics and floods slow down the pace of work. The 32nd span was installed in October after overcoming all obstacles. Then the rest of the spans are placed in a short time.
In response to a question from reporters at the meeting on Wednesday, Quader said, “There is nothing to worry about the Padma Bridge. Work on the bridge is nearing completion, with little work left. That will end this month. “
Asked what the name of the bridge is, the minister said, “We initially sent a proposal to the Prime Minister, proposing to build ‘Sheikh Hasina Padma Bridge’ there. After that, it is being said from different places that there is a demand in the Parliament that the name of Padma Bridge should be Sheikh Hasina Padma Bridge. ”
The bridge minister said, “I have told the prime minister about this, but he is not agreeing. However, in the summary of the inauguration of the bridge that we will send, Sheikh Hasina will propose the name for the construction of the Padma Bridge. ”
Asked why the toll fee of the bridge is higher, he said, “A summary of the toll rate of the Padma Bridge has been sent to the Prime Minister. We will work according to the instructions that will come after that. Only then will the toll rate of Padma Bridge be finalized. ”
The bridge minister also spoke about the Karnafuli tunnel at the board meeting of the bridge department.
He said, “Currently the work of the tunnel is going on. About 85 percent of the work of this project has been completed. Hopefully, this year will see the light of day for this project. ”