Apart from the emission of vehicles, the dust along the Srinagar-Jammu highway has become a top contributor of pollution in Ramban district, environmentalists and doctors said Monday.
They said that the loose soil flying everywhere causes respiratory illnesses among the pedestrians, especially elderly persons and children.
People living alongside Srinagar-Jammu highway passing through Ramban district are becoming victims of this pollution.
The inhabitants said that the highway had developed potholes and no repair work was being carried out due to which residents living alongside the highway and shopkeepers had to suffer due to inhalation of dust.
The district tops in air pollution in Jammu province.
Road dust is not even being prevented by spraying water at construction sites or repairing the damaged part of the highway.
A shopkeeper ShahnawazTantary, who runs a hotel alongside highway in Ramban town, said that a thick layer of dust settles on his clothes within few hours.
Inhabitants and local leaders said that their lives were at a risk due to excessive dust emitting during execution work from various construction sites from Nashri to Banihal.
A taxi driver, Tariq Lone said that due to flying dust at various construction sites, visibility gets reduced and it becomes very risky and dangerous to drive vehicles on the highway.
Another driver said that during the rainy days, slush and water logging makes it dangerous to drive as drivers are unable to find their way.
The locals, commuters and drivers have appealed Lt Governor ManojSinha to intervene by directing National Highway Authority of India (NHIA) to take precautionary measures during the execution of highway work.
As per the Memorandum of Understanding (MoU), NHAI is bound to maintain the present two-lane Srinagar-Jammu highway during the construction period of the four-lane road.