Truckers, commuters rue lack of amenities along Mughal Road

The road was made operational in 2012 and was touted as an alternate surface link to Jammu-Srinagar National Highway.
Trucks stranded along Mughal Road in south Kashmir's Shopian district.
Trucks stranded along Mughal Road in south Kashmir's Shopian district. Haseeb Ibn Hameed for Greater Kashmir

Shopian: Many truckers and other commuters are disinclined to travel along the awe-inspiring high altitude Mughal road due to the lack of wayside amenities .

The 84 km long arterial road, which connects Bufliaz in Poonch district to south Kashmir's Shopian district is bereft of washrooms, eateries and other utility services.

The road was made operational in 2012 and was touted as an alternate surface link to Jammu-Srinagar National Highway.

However, the lack of basic amenities along the road discourages both the truckers and other passengers to travel along the road.

"If your car breaks down on the way, you can't be able to get it fixed", said Javed Ahmad, a cab driver , who recently travelled on the road.

He said that the high altitude serpentine road gave travelers a heavenly feeling but the lack of wayside amenities dissuaded many to take this route.

A non-local trucker said that although there were no traffic jams on the road, the lack of basic amenities forced them to take Jammu- Srinagr National Highway.

Aijaz Dar, a local journlaist, who has been covering the area for the last many years said that one would go incommunicado soon after crossing the Heerpora village from the Shopian side.

"You can’t make an SOS call in case of any eventuality”, he said.

The absence of washrooms along the road makes the journey extremely difficult for the women travelers.

"Last year, I travelled to Srinagar via Mughal road, but it was a horrible experience as I could not find a single washroom along the road", said a female student.

Jahan Mansoor, general secretary Traders and Manufactures Association, Shopian told Greater Kashmir that the business in the district had to bear the brunt as less people chose to travel along the road.

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