Communication Crisis: Highway Closure Strands Thousands

KL Report

SRINAGAR

The Srinagar-Jammu highway continued to remain closed for the fourth day as landslides occurred at several places along the highway due to fresh snowfall and rains.

Officials said the highway was closed this afternoon by the officials after landslides occurred at Ramban. Around 100 vehicles that were allowed to proceed towards Valley after three days were stranded at several places of the highway.

“We allowed the light vehicles towards Valley after a landslide was cleared at Udhampur. However, the vehicles were stopped after another landslide occurred at Ramban. We’re making efforts to clear the highway,” IGP, Traffic Muneer Khan said.
The IGP Traffic appealed people to collect information from the traffic department before taking journey.

Closure of highway has left hundreds of Kashmir bound passengers stranded at General Bus Stand here.People have exhausted their money and are facing hardships in absence of any help from the government.

“We have been stuck here for the past three days but no one from the administration has bothered to come and see what we are facing,” Mohammad Yaqoob of Srinagar who is stuck at Jammu Bus Stand from last three days told local news agency KNS.Stranded include those on official duty from Kashmir.

An elderly women Fatima said, “I don’t know when the road will open and how many more days I will have to spend at this place. I am not feeling well and don’t have money with me. Where should I go,” the visibly worried lady Fatima of Kupwara said.

Another passenger Muzaffar Ahmad who is stuck along with two kids said, “I tried to get a room in a JDA government hotel but surprisingly the price quoted by the authorities was exorbitant. We were left with no other option other than to stay at open area at GBS.”

“Government’s indifference towards the stranded passengers could be gauged from the fact that neither Police nor district administration was cooperating with the public. Even no arrangement was made to separate the crowd on the station so as to avail space for them to rest,” he said.

Transport Minister Abdul Gani Kohli he said has directed the authorities to clear the Highway as soon as possible.
“There are hundreds of passengers stranded at Jammu. Government cannot airlift all of them at one time. I have directed the authorities to clear the road as soon as possible,” he said but was quick to add that if the highway doesn’t open government have definitely to provide some succor to them.

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