Kashmir Highway Closed, 600 Vehicles Stranded

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Trucks stranded on Kashmir Highway – KO File Pic

BANIHAL – Over 600 vehicles were stranded as fresh snowfall and landslides triggered by rains have closed the Jammu-Srinagar national highway again on Monday, officials said.

One-way traffic resumed on the 270-km Jammu-Srinagar highway on Sunday after remaining suspended for the past four days due to multiple landslides in Ramban district, the officials added.

The highway have been closed for traffic movement after fresh snowfall across the Jawahar tunnel and fresh landslide at Digdol forced authorities to close the traffic, the officials said.

More than 500 passenger vehicles, which were on way to Kashmir, have been stranded between Digdol and Ramban. Near about 100 passenger vehicles have been stranded at Jawahar tunnel and Banihal area, according to the officials.

Highway traffic officials said efforts were being made to return passenger vehicles back to Banihal and Ramban town from isolated places of highway.

Hundreds of passengers vehicles and load carriers have crossed the tunnel well before the highway was closed at 5 pm and 3.30 pm at Digdol after fresh snowfall and landslides respectively.

More than 6 inch of snow was recorded at the Jawahar tunnel, 3-4 inches at Banihal and Patnitop.

877 Trucks Reach Valley: J&K Admin

On the directions of Divisional Commissioner Kashmir Baseer Ahmad Khan, priority has been accorded for the clearance of trucks, loaded with essential commodities, on the National Highway which were stranded due to the inclement weather.

It was informed that 877 essential commodity laden trucks reached valley today out of which 245 were carrying general supplies, 306 Oil tankers, 103 Poultry, 57 Vegetables, 33 Sheep, 33 Fruits, 73 LPG Gas tankers and 18 Heavy Motor Vehicles of Food Corporation of India (FCI). Additional chains of trucks are on way from Jammu.

This was revealed in a meeting chaired by Divisional Commissioner Kashmir to review stock and supply position of ration, electricity and snow clearance preparedness.

The Divisional Commissioner directed the concerned officers to ensure smooth and hassle-free movement of essential commodity trucks on the National Highway so that consumers do not face any inconvenience during winter.

The meeting was informed that Power department has been supplying 1290 MW, out of 1300 MW grid capacity, electricity to the valley consumers.

Div Com asked Chief Engineers of Power to provide electricity to the consumers strictly as per revised power scheduled and avoid unscheduled power cuts.

It was further informed that 156 snow clearance machines of Mechanical Engineering Department (MED), 450 snow clearance machines of R&B, National Highway Authority of India (NHAI), Border Roads Organization (BRO) and RAMKY agencies have been already pre-positioned at identified locations.

The Divisional Commissioner directed senior officers of essential services departments to monitor the functioning of 24×7 winter joint control rooms which have been established in their offices and send daily report to the Div Com office.

The Div Com said that the divisional administration is ready to meet any exigency.

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