A four-kilometer stretch of the arterial Srinagar-Shopian road is in an appalling condition, causing tremendous inconvenience to a large number of commuters every day.
The battered stretch from Bundzoo to Hall in southern Pulwama district is dotted with potholes ignored by authorities.
Many commuters told Greater Kashmir that it was way difficult to travel on the bumpy stretch. “It takes around 15 minutes to cover these few kilometers,” said Javed Ahmad, a government employee who travels daily on the road.
A local resident of the area blamed the poor workmanship and official indifference for the poor condition of the road.
“Authorities hardly care about the roads. They do some nominal patchwork in the name of repairs,” he said.
The Srinagr-Shopian road has emerged as an important surface link over the years as it connects Kashmir with Poonch in Jammu division via the traditional Mughal road which serves as an alternate route to Srinagar-Jammu national highway.
“Whenever Srinagar-Jammu national highway is shut due to inclement weather conditions particularly during the summers, the traffic plies on this road,” said Mohammd Ashraf, a resident of Shopian.
Many residents say that the rush of traffic on the road enhances significantly during the harvesting season and its pathetic condition results in frequent and long traffic snarls.
“The fruit laden trucks move slowly on the road which leads to traffic jams. The road is also prone to accidents,” said a Shopian resident among a complaining group.
A motorcyclist said that bikers bore the brunt of the poor road condition as the potholes often threw them off balance.
“You may suffer body ache for quite some time if you ride down this stretch,” the biker said.
Executive Engineer R&B, Pulwama told Greater Kashmir that the surface of the stretch had worn off.
“We will soon issue tender for repairment of the stretch,” he added.