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NH opens for one-way traffic; massive jams

Army rescues trapped patients

Excelsior Correspondent
Srinagar, Feb 22: After remaining closed for the two days, Jammu-Srinagar National Highway was re-opened for traffic today but there were massive traffic jams due to breakdown of vehicles at many places.
Inspector General of Police Traffic, Jagjeet Kumar told Excelsior that due to breakdown of vehicles at many places between Udhampur and Batote there were traffic jams on the National Highway and over 1500 vehicles are still stranded on the highway.
The IG said that they are waiting for these vehicles to cross Banihal Tunnel towards Kashmir so that they can take a decision for traffic movement on the highway for tomorrow. However, he clarified that if these vehicles are cleared by tonight, one-way traffic will be allowed from Srinagar to Jammu tomorrow.
Kumar said 2145 Light Motor Vehicles (LMVs) and 2170 Heavy Motor Vehicles (HMVs) crossed the Jawahar Tunnel towards Srinagar by this evening.
The Meteorological (MeT) department had forecast dry weather conditions for next few days.
In the meantime, an ambulance carrying nine people including a pregnant woman and 15-year old boy under post operative recovery was stranded at Nastachung Pass in Tanghdar sector of North Kashmir’s Kupwara district due to landslide at last evening and were evacuated by Army.
Srinagar based Defence spokesman said that 15-year old Madsoor Ahmed resident of village Parada was being moved from Tanghdar to Chowkibal after undergoing surgery for a stomach ailment along with Waheed Mir, a 24 year old woman from Tanghdar being treated for anemia in her advance stage of pregnancy, when they got stranded at Nastachung Pass in Tanghdar Tehsil with seven others in an ambulance.
“The ambulance could not move to Chowkibal or return to Tanghdar because of landslides on either side. The dropping temperatures at an altitude of 10,000 feet was affecting the patients severely and could have been fatal for the anemic patient, had it not been for the swift reaction by the Army Rescue Team,” he said.
The spokesman said the team not only cleared the way for the ambulance to return to Tanghdar but also provided medical relief and care to the patients. “The survivors expressed their gratitude to the Army rescue team for salvaging them from a helpless situation, he added.

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