Kashmir highway to remain closed for repair purpose

SRINAGAR : The 300-km-long Srinagar-Jammu national highway will remain closed for the entire day today to undertake necessary repair work of the road damaged due to landslides and soil erosion at several places.
Amarnath yatra from Jammu to base camps in Kashmir will remain suspended for the third day today due to suspension of the traffic on the highway, connecting the valley to the rest of the country.
However, hundreds of vehicles, which were stranded at different places on the highway were being cleared in phases since last night, a traffic police official told  today.      No fresh vehicles will be allowed from Jammu or Srinagar today, he said.
The highway was closed on August 8 following landslides and soil erosion due to heavy rain at Sheri Udhampur in Jammu region, affecting Amarnath yatra also.
However, the Border Roads Organisation (BRO), responsible for the maintenance of the highway and District administration Udhampur immediately swung into action and put into service sophisticated machines and men to clear the landslides and repair the road which was partially washed away.
Traffic was restored partially on August 8 but was again closed later in the night following fresh landslides. Yesterday, traffic was partially restored in the evening and hundreds of vehicles, including those carrying passengers were allowed to move towards their respective destinations, he said.
Large number of vehicles still remained stranded were  being allowed to move in a phased manner as the highway is still not restored fully, he said, adding it will take some more time to clear the stranded vehicles from both sides.
Today it has been decided not to allow any fresh vehicle to allow BRO to repair the highway fully.         This year traffic on the Kashmir highway frequently witnessed disruption due to landslides and soil erosion. It is for the first time only light vehicles are allowed from both sides and heavy vehicles are still plying on alternate days on the highway even during summer. However, heavy vehicles carrying Amarnath pilgrims are being allowed to ply from both sides.
However, the national highway, connecting the Ladakh region with Kashmir and historic Mughal road, linking Shopian in south valley with Rajouri and Poonch in Jammu region are through. (AGENCIES)


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