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Slides, shooting stones block NH; rain, snow forecast for 3 days

Fayaz Bukhari
SRINAGAR, Feb 28: Jammu-Srinagar National Highway was closed for traffic mostly due to a major landslide that occurred at Mehar in Ramban area and Weatherman has forecast rains and snow for next three day.
A massive land slide that occurred at Mehar in Ramban area last night blocked a major stretch of road as it came under huge boulders and debris. The clearance of the massive slide was started immediately by the Border Roads Organization.
The clearance operation was on till reports last came in and hundreds of vehicles are stranded on the highway.
A traffic official said that due to continuous sliding and shooting stones at Mehar, Ramban today as well, a major portion of road at the said location is still covered under huge boulders and debris.
“Notwithstanding continuous clearing-off by the concerned road maintenance agency, the road could not be thrown open for traffic. Though the efforts vis-à-vis making the road traffic worthy are afoot, yet tough time is being faced by the road maintenance agency in carrying out road clearance process, which, however, is going on”, the official said.
The official said that no traffic movement will be allowed on the highway tomorrow. “In view of the above, no movement of traffic either from Jammu or Srinagar shall be allowed on Jammu-Srinagar NH tomorrow keeping in view the security/ safety of drivers/passengers”, he said.
In the last two winter months, supplies to the Valley was affected due to frequent closure of the highway following the landslides and snowfall. The slides are mostly caused due to road construction between Udhampur and Banihal.
In the meantime, Meteorological Department forecast three-day long spell of rain and snow for Jammu and Kashmir from today.
“There is a likelihood of isolated to widespread rain in the plains during this period while light snowfall is likely to occur in the mountains,” an official said.
The minimum temperature recorded in Srinagar today was 4.8 degree Celsius while Pahalgam and Gulmarg recorded minus 0.2 and minus 2.6 degree Celsius respectively. Leh recorded minus 4.6 degrees Celsius while it was minus 5.2 degree Celsius in Kargil.

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