Srinagar-Muzaffarabad road closed, re-opened after 4 hours

File photo of Srinagar-Muzaffarabad road. [Image for representational purpose only]

The Srinagar-Muzaffarabad road was closed for vehicular traffic in Uri area of North Kashmir’s Baramulla district on Friday morning after it got hit by landslides at 72 milestones near NS Bridge. The stretch was reopened within four hours.

Over 100 vehicles were stranded on the road since 6 am along with some ambulances.

“We pressed our men and machinery into service and restored it within four hours,” said an official of Border Roads Organization (BRO) wishing anonymity.

He said, “We could have cleared the road at the earliest, but the continuous rains were hampering the work.”

Locals said that it is not for the first time that the highway was closed.

“It has happened in the past as well. We want a permanent solution to the problem. We are suffering immensely on a daily basis,” said Toshi Zuffer, a local of Paranpillan village.

Meanwhile, the Garkote-Lagama (7 kilometres) road has also been closed for the traffic following the massive landslides at multiple spots. “It is unfortunate that the road has not been opened yet despite knowing that Eid will be celebrated on Saturday and people would have to buy the essential commodities,” said local.

He said that PMGSY department had done the widening of Upper Garkote- Thala road last year. “The department has not done the proper disposal of the debris recovered during widening. It was causing the closure of the main Garkote road,” he said.

Assistant Executive Engineer (AEE) PMGSY Uri Imtiyaz Wani said that men have gone to their homes in view of Eid celebrations. “We are arranging some manpower so that the road can be opened by tonight only,” he said.