Indian Army’s cycling event for nature flagged off from Pangsau Pass

Mar 10, 2016 14:14 IST

Pangsau Pass: The pass offers one of the easiest routes into Burma from the Assam plains

Pangsau Pass (Pan Saung Pass) was in news in the second week of March 2016. It came into news after a cycling expedition with the theme ‘Cycle to Recycle’ was flagged off by the Indian Army on 8 March 2016 as part Assam Rifles’ 181st raising day celebrations.

Pangsau Pass is at an altitude of 3727 feet and lies on the crest of the Patkai Hills on the India-Burma border. The Pass offers one of the easiest routes into Burma from the Assam plains. It is named after the closest Burmese village, Pangsau that lies 2 km beyond the pass to the east.

Key characteristics of the Pangsau Pass

• It is the reputed route of the 13th century invasion of Assam in India by the Ahoms, a Shan tribe.

• In the late 19th century, the pass was recognised as the possible railway route from India to Myitkyina in north Burma through the Hukawng Valley.

• The pass became famous during World War II for being the initial obstacle encountered by American General "Vinegar Joe" Stilwell's forces in their effort to build a land route to isolated China after the fall of Burma to the Japanese.

• Because of the fierce gradients and the mud which makes getting up to the pass difficult, it was nicknamed "Hell Pass" during the World War-II.

• The Pangsau Pass Winter Festival is celebrated every year at Nampong, Arunachal Pradesh and is the second most popular tourism event of the State. The festival unearths the magnificent isle of culture of the Tangsa tribes, their cuisines and the exotic countryside.

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