The Bridge over the Rungeet- The Life-line of Sikkim and neighbouring British Provinces.

This photograph of the old bridge has been shared with me by my student Dweep Subba of B. A. IIIrd Semester (Eng. Hons). The Picture was taken by Das Studio, Darjeeling in the 1880's. The bridge was a life line towards Sikkim during those days. It is to be noted here that Colmon Macauley has also talked about the existence of a similar kind of bridge over River Rungeet between the Kingdom of Sikkim and British province of Darjeeling while he was going to Tibet for a trade mission. Probably this might be the bridge which Macauley had crossed while heading towards Sikkim in the 80's of the 19th century. The bridge was made up of bamboos. It became the main way of transportation of the British when they caught hold of the politics of Sikkim. Probably, via this way only the British came to Sikkim to stabilise the political upheavels poised by the then Sikkimese monarchy. This bridge played a vital role in the treaty of 1861 between Government of Sikkim and British India if it is the same bridge which has been referred upon. In the photograph, we can see a couple of Britishers along with one or two local who might have been the porters to carry their loads towards Sikkim. Certainly, the bridge bears a historical value in the context of Independent Sikkim and its relation with the British India. Das Studio, Darjeeling obviously deserves special sense of gratitude for having preserved such an important photograph and we are greatly indebted to the owners.