Delay in Mughal Road reopening

Continuous road closure causing inconvenience to travellers
A cab crosses a bridge along Mughal Road in Pir Panjal range amid snow.
A cab crosses a bridge along Mughal Road in Pir Panjal range amid snow. File: ANI

The historic Mughal Road, which connects the Poonch and Rajouri districts in Jammu with the Kashmir Valley, continues to remain blocked since winter. After the winter months, the road used to reopen in March or first week of April. But this year the road is yet to be thrown open. According to the authorities the delay this year is because of the frequent snowfall, heavy rains and landslides at several places in March, April and even in May.

They said that the unfavourable weather conditions add more problems and prolong the road clearance operations. Regarding chances of road reopening, they said if the weather conditions permit, the road can be thrown open officially after a week. Presently the concerned department is busy in road clearance at the places hit by landslides. The road closure has put the people, who used to travel on road, to lot of inconvenience. They include students and businessmen.

They hope that the road clearance operation is completed at the earliest and vehicular traffic movement restored again. The officials have urged the travellers to plan their travel only after the road is reopened officially. The authorities must speedily complete the road clearance at the earliest and reopen the road once the travel is safe. Mughal Road is very important and needs further development to make it an all weather road. Till now it remains closed during the winter months. Union Road Transport and Highways Minister,Nitin Gadkari, who was recently on a visit to Jammu and Kashmir, announced to make Mughal Road an all weather, and two lane road.

Tunnels will be constructed including the highly important one at Peer Ki Gali for its all weather connectivity. The announcement was widely hailed. There has been a strong demand for developing Mughal Road as an all weather road. Gadkari said whenever the earlier chief ministers would meet him they used to demand for all weather connectivity on Mughal Road. After the Union Minister’s announcement it is being hoped that the work will start at the earliest.

The road also needs immediate repair work at several places. That should be taken up immediately and without any delay. The repairs would make the travel smooth once the road is reopened. There are also reports of lack of necessary facilities at important places on the road. According to the passengers the eateries and wash rooms are unavailable. The concerned authorities must pay attention towards this problem. All required facilities need to be made available for the convenience of the people travelling on the road.

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