Neten Dorji

RANGJUNG — In the face of mounting challenges posed by the absence of a fuel depot in Rangjung town, residents have had to resort to time-consuming journeys to Trashigang, situated 30 kilometres away, to refuel their vehicles and replenish their LPG cylinders.

Local leaders in Trashigang have stepped up to address this pressing issue by proposing the establishment of a fuel depot at Rangjung, specifically catering to the northern gewogs of Trashigang.

Phongmey Gup Namgyel Wangdi emphasised the urgency of the matter, pointing out the steady rise in the number of vehicles each year. He believes that a fuel depot in Rangjung town would yield considerable savings in both time and money for the community. Moreover, the presence of such a facility would expedite the refueling process for the eight neighbouring gewogs in the northern parts of the dzongkhag, including Merak, Sakteng, Phongmey, Radhi, Shongphu, Bartsham, Bidung, and Samkhar.

Sakteng Mangmi Tashi Dorji has rallied behind the proposal, underscoring the significance of a fuel depot for the distant gewogs of Sakteng and Merak, which face considerable challenges due to their geographical isolation from the dzongkhag. The arduous two-hour journey to reach the Bhutan Oil Distributor (BOD) depot at Kheri in Trashigang has been a persistent hurdle for the residents, prompting the call for a localised solution.

Local leaders have highlighted the pressing need for a fuel depot at Rangjung due to the high population density, a substantial number of vehicles, and clustered settlements in the northern gewogs.

Although plans for a depot have been discussed in the past, they couldn’t come to fruition due to the lack of suitable space.

Bidung Gup Chador Phuntsho said, “The plan for a fuel depot at Rangjung had been there for many years and was discussed in the dzongkhag Tshogdus…The depot will benefit the residents of nearby gewogs if we can identify the land.”

Kanglung Gup Kinzang Dorji shared that previous efforts to secure government land for the depot had been in vain.

The absence of a nearby fuel depot has left motorists with no choice but to embark on lengthy trips to the fuel depots in Trashigang, incurring substantial expenses and consuming valuable time. The frustration is palpable among residents and business owners who have been grappling with the inconvenience.

In light of the increasing number of vehicles in the upper gewogs of Trashigang, the Dzongkhag Tshogdu has taken action, resolving to identify suitable space and approach the trade office in Mongar to establish a fuel station at Rangjung.

Should the proposal materialise, it promises to bring respite and convenience to the eight northern gewogs, transforming the daily lives of residents and fueling growth in the region.