Opening of Brahmaputra bridge after end of ‘inauspicious’ month

Guwahati, December 30
In an apparent superstitious move, the Assam government has decided to postpone the inauguration of a second bridge over the Brahmaputra river, connecting main city Guwahati, and wait another fortnight for the ‘inauspicious’ month of
‘Puh’ to end.
The second Saraighat road bridge, which runs parallel to the first ever road-cum-rail Saraighat bridge over the Brahmaputra, was expected to be opened for public on January 1 by Union Transport minister Nitin Gadkari.
This second bridge is expected to ease massive traffic congestion in the area and prove a major relief for commuters as well as freight carriers.
State PWD minister Parimal Suklabaidya, inspecting the bridge today, however, announced that the new bridge will not be inaugurated on New Year’s Day as it falls in the ‘inauspicious’ month of ‘Puh’, as per the Assamese calendar.
Talking to reporters at the bridge site, he said, “Many leading citizens and intellectuals have advised the government not to inaugurate the bridge in the month of Puh, as no positive work is commenced in this month as per Assamese tradition.
Hence, we have decided to inaugurate it in the next Assamese month of Magh (which starts from January 15.”
He added that Gadkari will be formally opening the second Saraighat bridge at least a fortnight later, though the bridge is ‘cent per cent’ ready for inauguration.
The decision to postpone the inauguration on apparent superstitious grounds is feared to trigger a backlash in the state, especially since the already much-delayed new bridge could have helped in easing traffic congestion for the entire Guwahati city.

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