Jammu: Chief Secretary Arun Kumar Mehta Tuesday stressed on the Traffic Police to put in place a robust communication and information mechanism to regulate Heavy Motor Vehicles (HMV) at critical points on the Srinagar-Jammu National Highway (NH-44)like Qazigund-Banihal, Banihal Market, Sherbibi, Panthayal, and Mehar.
An official spokesman in a statement issued here said that chairing a meeting to take stock of the traffic movement on NH-44, the chief secretary directed that Traffic Department should issue daily Information bulletins for stakeholders mentioning the travel time taken by HMVs from Qazigund to Jakhani, loss of time due to shooting stones at Cafeteria Morh-Mehar and number of vehicles waiting to leave for Jammu.
The traffic management authorities were asked to augment manpower requirements from all sources to regulate traffic optimally, besides enforcing lane discipline in the critical stretches between Ramban and Banihal.
For seasonal migration, the Tribal Affairs Department (TAD) and Deputy Commissioners (DCs) were directed to ensure that no ‘Dera’ is allowed to move on NH-44, especially between Qazigund and Ramban and that they are provided with suitable conveyance to carry their cattle and family members.
The concerned district administrations were asked to ensure that unattended cattle do not wander on the highway.
To ensure hassle-free movement, it was decided that the down convoy of HMVs should be permitted from 11 am from Qazigund up till 9 pm on alternate days.
It was said that the drivers should appropriately be made aware for not leaving their place of unloading and parking their vehicles anywhere on the highway.
Moreover, district administration Ramban was instructed to ensure the deployment of adequate manpower and a traffic management team at Banihal Market to ensure no roadside parking of vehicles and occupation of the carriageway by the street vendors.
It was said that public transporters should also be persuaded not to park their vehicles on the highway for getting boarding of passengers but to use earmarked places only for this purpose.
During the meeting, the divisional administration of Kashmir was asked to encourage HMVs to use Mughal Road and ADG Jammu was simultaneously asked to ensure better management of the Poshana checkpoint to expedite the checking of vehicles at the spot.
Further, the National Highway Authority of India (NHAI) was directed to follow timelines given during the last meeting for clearance of muck from Cafeteria Morh and Mehar, blacktopping of the potholed portion on the highway between Banihal and Ramban, completion of the T-5 Tunnel and widening of Ramsoo-Rampari-Sherbibi stretch of the road.
The meeting also decided that suitable recommendations of the joint study team of CBRI, IIT Roorkee, and IIT Jammu be taken for measures to be undertaken for stabilising the Cafeteria-Mehar section of NH-44.
It was said that the same be speedily implemented by NHAI so that the travel time on the highway gets reduced considerably.
The meeting was attended by the senior officers from divisional and district administration, Traffic Police Department, J&K Police, and NHAI.