Highway Remains Shut, 100’s Stranded

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Srinagar: The Srinagar-Jammu Highway remained shut for the third day today due to landslides and shooting stones, triggered by rain and snow.

Hundreds of vehicles, including those carrying passengers and trucks loaded with essentials, also remained stranded on the highway for the past several days.

Meanwhile, the Ladakh region remained cut off from the Kashmir valley as snow clearance operation launched has been hampered due to fresh snowfall.

There was also fresh snowfall on historic Mughal road, linking Shopian in south Kashmir with Rajouri and Poonch in Jammu region, which remained closed for the past four months.

  Traffic remained suspended on the Srinagar-Jammu national highway for the third day today as there were fresh landslides, a traffic police official told UNI this morning.

Hundreds of Kashmir bound vehicles, particularly those carrying essentials, including vegetables, are stranded at different places, including Jammu, Udhampur and Nagrota due to closure of the highway.

Similarly empty trucks and oil tankers besides other vehicles are stranded on this side of the Jawahar tunnel.

However, the Border Roads Organisation (BRO), responsible for the maintainance of the highway, had pressed into service sophisticated machines and men to put through the highway. However, continued rain, triggering more landslides, has been hampering the operation.

Traffic police official said traffic on the highway will be allowed only after receiving green signal from the BRO and traffic police personnel deployed at several places.

Traffic on the highway was disrupted frequently since January 6 when there was first major snowfall in the valley. Closure of the highway resulted in shortage and increase of prices of essentials in the valley, where everything is imported from different state. However, BRO reopened the highway but only one-way traffic was allowed as the road remained damaged and narrow at several places due to landslides.

There was fresh snowfall on Srinagar-Leh national highway, particularly at Zojila pass and Zero point, hampering the snow clearance operation launched by BEACON authorities. Snow clearance operation was going on from both sides of the Zojila pass, officials said adding but fresh snowfall besides threat of avalanche could delay the early reopening of highway, which was closed in December last year.

Similarly there was also fresh snowfall on historic Mughal raod badly affecting snow clearance operation. The road, which is seen as alternative to Srinagar-Jammu highway, was to reopen on April 15 after remaining closed for the past four months.

Dozens of far flung and remote areas, including those near the Line of Control (LoC)  remained cut off from their respective district headquarter for the past four months due to accumulation of snow.

  There was fresh snowfall at Razdan pass, connecting border town of Gurez, surrounded by Pakistani part of Kashmir, with Bandipore.

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