No more steep climb to get atop Singalia range

Gangtok: The breath-taking scenic spots on the Singalia range of the Himalayas in Sikkim remain out of bounds for most tourists who are unable to trek through the 12-km steep uphill route to get there.

Only the brave and the young can negotiate the narrow route that starts from Uttarey village in West Sikkim to Chewa Bhangyang, Kalijhar, Phoktey Dara and other such beautiful spots. But, now a motorable road being built from Uttarey village in West Sikkim to Nepal right across the Singalia range will come to their help.

The West Sikkim District Collector, Santa Pradhan, said the importance of the road cannot be overemphasised. "When completed, the road will be a dream-come-true for numerous tourists who are forced to end their journey at Uttarey village, finding themselves helpless before the steep climb," Pradhan said.

Pradhan said the portion of the road in Nepal was almost complete, just 2.5 km away from the Sikkim border. On the Indian side, however, the progress of the road, being built under the Border Area Development Programme, has been tardy.

The road on the Nepalase side, sources said, had already reached Chanpathuk where the Nepal army check post is situated, a distance of around two kilometres from Chewa Bhanjhyang. The district collector said that the proposal for the road from Uttarey to Chewa Bhangyang had been sanctioned around five months back.