Landslides keep Srinagar-Jammu highway shut for 2nd day

The strategic Srinagar-Jammu national highway was closed due to fresh landslides for the second consecutive day on Thursday.

The traffic was suspended on Wednesday evening following landslides at Digdol Ramban, Inspector General of Police (Traffic) Alok Kumar told Greater Kashmir. He said about 2000 vehicles, including 400 tankers, are stranded on the highway.

“Not even a motorcycle can pass,” he said.

He said that efforts are being made to clear the highway and no vehicle would be allowed to ply towards Ramban from Udhampur and Banihal side.

Regional director National Highway Authority of India, Hemraj, said the road is likely to be thrown open during the night.

Many commuters alleged that ever since the civil secretariat moved to Srinagar, a sizable number of traffic policemen have disappeared from the highway, which was one of the reasons for the traffic mess at some key junctions.

Meanwhile, only one-way traffic would be permitted on the Srinagar-Leh highway, the only road linking Ladakh region with Kashmir Valley.

TRAFFIC NORMAL ON MUGHAL ROAD:

The traffic on the 84-km mountainous road, connecting the twin districts of Poonch and Rajouri in Jammu region with south Kashmir’s Shopian, plied normally on Thursday, officials said.

The Mughal road, an alternate link between Kashmir and rest of the country, was Wednesday opened for traffic after remaining closed for four months owing to heavy snowfall during winter.

However, hundreds of vehicles are stranded on the Bufliaz side of the road because only one-way traffic has been allowed on the road.

SSP Poonch Ramesh Angral said only one-way traffic from Kashmir side was allowed today due to bad condition of the highway.

He appealed to the motorists to follow the traffic guidelines to avoid inconvenience.

A traffic police official said that they had issued traffic advisory yesterday but the motorists didn’t follow these.

The opening of the Mughal road has eased load on the Jammu-Srinagar national highway, which witnessed frequent closure this winter due to landslides between Ramban and Banihal, leading to scarcity of essential commodities in the Valley.