Beijing appealed to India to reopen the 1,727km Burma Road to ease trade between the two countries. Shao Qiwei, vice-governor of Yunnan province, made the bid at a trade summit in Calcutta. Also known as the Stillwell Road, after ï¿½Vinegar Joeï¿½ Stillwell, the United States Army general who masterminded its construction in World War II, the road links Assam in Bengal with Kunming in Yunnan. State Chief Minister Buddhadev Bhattacharya said the link traversing Burma, though in a neglected state now, held the potential to cement a provincial-level relationship between Yunnan and Bengal. Officials agreed the sooner it was fixed the better.