Delayed transportation of apples

Kashmiri apples are famous for their taste, colour and flavour but are too fragile to be kept for days together in Mandis and not transported to markets well in time. Any delay in providing transportation facilities is tantamount to cause losses to the orchardists. The apple industry of Kashmir is valued at over Rs.1200 crore but since the truck loads have to wait for more than two to three days in Qazigund for crossing Jawahar Tunnel, this delay is fraught with causing heavy losses to the industry. The problem is specific and seasonal.
Why are these trucks stopped for between 24 to 48 hours before they are allowed to cross the Banihal Tunnel is what the Fruit and Vegetable Association office bearers are sore about .Instead of taking less than six days for a fruit laden truck from the valley to reach fruit Mandi in Azadpur Delhi or other states, it takes presently 10 to 12 days. This delay causes loss to the quality of the apples and rates per box get dropped by as much as Rs. 100 to Rs.200 in the market. Traffic and other issues needed to be resolved to save the losses suffered by apple growers. Apple trucks needed to be given preference on the National Highway and the same needed to be kept open 24 hours open for at least two months of apple transportation season. We urge the authorities to look into the issue and sort out the difficulties faced by the apple growers on priority basis.