Kashmir highway reopens partially, Mughal road remain shut

Srinagar: Traffic was partially restored on Thursday evening on the Srinagar-Jammu national highway after remaining suspended since yesterday due to heavy snowfall and slippery road conditions.

However, the Mughal road, connecting Shopian in south Kashmir with Rajouri and Poonch in Jammu region, remained closed for the fourth day today due to fresh snowfall, particularly at Pir-ki-Gali,  a traffic police official told UNI. He said the road has also become very slippery as the snow had frozen due to below freeing temperature.

Traffic remained suspended since yesterday afternoon on Srinagar-Jammu national highway due to snowfall and landslides, a senior traffic police official told UNI. However, the Border Roads Organisation (BRO), responsible for the maintainance of the highway pressed into service sophisticated machines and men to clear over two to two and half feet of snowfall on the highway.

After the snow was cleared and road was declared safe for journey, we allowed Kashmir bound stranded vehicles to move from Banihal, Ramban and other places this evening. He said efforts are being made to clear all stranded vehicles adding decision to resume normal traffic tomorrow will be taken after reviewing the road and weather condition tomorrow morning.

About Jammu bound stranded vehicles from this side of the tunnel, he said since there was no traffic from Kashmir to Jammu yesterday when only up convoy was allowed, no vehicle was stranded. However, he said some vehicles which had reached Qazigund to start early morning journey towards Jammu today, have been stopped at Qazigund. These vehicles will be allowed only after all Kashmir bound stranded vehicles will be cleared.

He said some persons were injured yesterday when few vehicles skidded off the road due to slippery conditions. However, there was no serious accident, he said.

Meanwhile, large number of vehicles, including trucks and oil tankers, are stranded on both sides of the Gali, official sources said adding last months over 200 passengers and truckers were rescued after they got struck on the road due to snow. It was heavily snowing on the historic road at several places since last night. The road remained closed for six winter months due to heavy snowfall. However, the authorities have already announced to construct a tunnel to make it all weather road.



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