India is now home to the world’s highest motorable road, as Border Roads Organisation (BRO) constructed and black-topped the road at Umlingla Pass in Eastern Ladakh.
At an altitude of 19,300 feet, this is higher than the base camps of Mount Everest as the South Base Camp in Nepal is at the height of 17,598 feet, while North Base Camp in Tibet is at 16,900 feet.
The 52-km long road built through Umlingla Pass connects important towns in the Chumar sector of Eastern Ladakh.
Infrastructure development in such harsh and tough terrain is exceptionally challenging. During the winter, the temperature dips to -40 degrees and the oxygen level at this altitude are almost 50 per cent less than at regular places.
“BRO has constructed a 52-km long tarmac road through Umlingla Pass, bettering the previous record of a road in Bolivia connecting to its volcano Uturuncu at 18,953 ft,” the Ministry of Defence said.
“It will prove to be a boon to the local population as it offers an alternate direct route connecting Chisumle and Demchok from Leh. It will enhance the socio-economic condition and promote tourism in Ladakh,” it added.