MURNAD: Built across River Kaveri in Bethri, the Bethri bridge is one of the important bridges in Kodagu. Part of Virajpet-Baindur state highway, the bridge connects the towns of Madikeri and Virajpet. Even though there are other routes to connect the two towns, the road via Bethri bridge provides the shortest travel distance between Madikeri and Virajpet. One of the oldest bridges constructed after independence, it is built in arch shape. According to some estimate, more than 1000 vehicles move along the bridge daily.
Colonel O S Bedi, IPS, then the chief commissioner of Coorg had laid the foundation stone for Bethri bridge on March 29, 1953. It was inaugurated by then Union Minister for Transport and Railways Lal Bahaddur Shastri on May 29, 1955. Coorg was a ‘C’ state at that time.
MADIKERI: Kodagu, which witnessed heavy rains and floods in the third week of August this year, is now showing signs of water scarcity with the water level in River Kaveri dipping drastically across its path at Napoklu, Murnad and Siddapur.
After the all-consuming deluge which inundated many areas, rivers, streams and wells in Kodagu are seemingly drying up fast, exposing dry sand beds at many places. At Bethri near Murnad, the River Kaveri is now flowing with just a couple of feet high water.
Though in August, as the floods raged, River Kaveri overshot its banks at most places in Kodagu, sinking several parts of the district, it has been noticed that water levels at wells and streams at many places have drastically dipped in the last few weeks.