Train run on Sgr-Bla track remains affected for security reasons

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SRINAGAR: Train service was again affected on Srinagar-Baramulla track following clash­es between demonstrators and security forces in Pattan area in north Kashmir yesterday.

However, Badgam-Srinagar in central Kashmir to Banihal in Jammu region via Anant­nag and Qazigund in south Kashmir was operating nor­mally, a railway official told UNI this morning.

He admitted that train ser­vice on Srinagar-Badgam-Baramulla track in north Kashmir was affected since yesterday afternoon.

However, he said, train is now operation from Srinagar to Pattan on Baramulla track for security reasons.

Decision to extend the train run upto Baramulla will be taken later in the day, depend­ing upon the security situa­tion, he added.

Train service on the track was suspended on December 5 after track hooks were found damaged at Palhallan Pattan, where clashes took place be­tween security forces and dem­onstrators, who were protesting against night raids and arrest of some persons on December 4.

Train service was restored yesterday after the damaged portion of the track was re­stored by the railways.

However, service was again suspended in the afternoon fol­lowing massive clashes between demonstrators and security forc­es at Tantrapora Pattan. Security forces had to fire in air and burst teargas shells to disperse the demonstrators who had blocked the track and tried to damage it.

Rail service between Baram­ulla in north to Badgam and Srinagar in central Kashmir and Anantnag and Qazigund in south Kashmir to Banihal in Jammu region remained suspended for more than four months due to unrest in the Kashmir valley during which rail track and other property was damaged. However, the rail run was resumed last week after conducting repair work.

The railways has suffered more than Rs 4.5 crore loss during the unrest when train service remained suspended.

Despite security concerns, the train will chug for students on second and fourth Sunday of every month under the title ‘Wadi Ki Sair’.

Meanwhile, Divisional Com­missioner, Kashmir, Baseer Khan has directed the officials of Education Department to choose only class 6th to 8th standard students who will be allowed to board the train and for every 25 students one teacher shall accompany them during the journey.

He also directed the Deputy Commissioners to appoint nodal officers from Education Department in every concerned district to maintain close liaison with the Railway authorities.

He impressed upon all con­cerned officials and Railway authorities to coordinate with each other to further fine-tune the arrangements for the pro­posed children special train.

The Divisional Commis­sion also directed State Road Transport Corporation (SRTC) authorities to depute 2 buses at Qazigund railway station, 3 bus­es at Anantnag station, 4 buses at Awantipora Station, 2 buses each at Srinagar, Budgam, So­pore and Baramulla Stations to facilitate students to reach sta­tions in a hassle-free manner.

He has also directed the of­ficials of Health department to depute one Doctor with para­medical staff and ambulance at each such station.

It was decided that Protocol department will provide re­freshment on every station for the students, while as Police and CRPF will provide elabo­rate security arrangements.

Pertinently, Chief Minister Mehbooba Mufti will flag-off this train on December

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