Kashmir highway closed on sixth consecutive day


Amid fresh landslides at several places along the Srinagar-Jammu highway, the strategic thoroughfare, the only surface link connecting Kashmir Valley with rest of the world, remained closed for the sixth consecutive day on Saturday.

Stranded passengers on Srinagar-Jammu highway, KL image by Shah Hilal

“Traffic movement disrupted continuously for the 6th day due to frequently shooting stones/landslides occurred in Ramban-Banihal stretch on Jammu-Srinagar. Traffic Cops and road maintenance agencies are on job (clearing road). Therefore tomorrow on 26.01.2019, subject to fair weather/clearance of road only stranded vehicles shall be allowed,” a traffic spokesman said.

Meanwhile, there was overnight fresh snow in many parts of the Valley, mostly in hilly areas even as night temperature rose across Kashmir, said a meteorological department official.

Pertinently, the stranded passengers and truck drivers protested earlier urging the government to clear the road so that they can move towards their destinations.

Passengers travelling from Jammu to Kashmir have been stuck on the road for the last five days without any accommodation or help from the government and the families including women and children have been suffering badly.

As most of the trucks stranded carry the livestock and other supplies to Kashmir from other states of the country, mostly from Punjab, a member of All Kashmir Wholesale Mutton Dealers (AKWMD), Mehraj-ud-din Ganai said that they have been making continuous requests to the authorities to give preference to livestock loaded vehicles and provide any accommodation to keep them along the Ramban area but our requests fell into deaf ears.

“The trucks carrying livestock from Jammu to Srinagar are stuck and we are facing a loss of Rupees 10 lakh daily. In addition, a serious threat is posed to the health of livestock due to cold weather conditions,” he said.

Adding to the miseries of stuck families and truck drivers, they said many shopkeepers have raised the prices of basic commodities and taking undue advantages of their problems.


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