Dozens of far flung and remote villages, including those near the Line of Control (LoC) remained cut off while traffic on national highway, linking the Kashmir valley with the rest of the country, was restored after fresh landslides last night. Traffic on Kashmir highway was plying from Srinagar to Jammu today and no vehicle was allowed from opposite direction.
Meanwhile, the Ladakh region remained cut off from the Kashmir valley due to closure of the national highway due to accumulation of several feet of snowfall. The historic Mughal road, connecting Shopian in south Kashmir with Rajouri and Poonch in Jammu region remained shut due to snow. Dozens of village, including near the LoC in Machil sector remained cut off from district headquarter due to accumulation of several feet of snow. Locals alleged that authorities have failed to clear the snow on the road despite repeated assurance so far.
There are several patients who need immediate specialized treatment, the local villagers of Machil said alleging that they were now facing acute shortage of essentials though there is enough stock of rice and atta. The border town of Gurez, surrounded by Pakistan administered Kashmir (PaK), also remained cut off from district headquarter Bandipora due to snow. The road is likely to reopen in summer. A number of other far flung and remote areas also remained cut off from their respective district headquarters.
Traffic on the 300-km-long Srinagar-Jammu national highway was again disrupted last night due to fresh landslides at Ramsu. However, the Border Roads Organisation (BRO), responsible for the maintenance of the highway immediately put into service sophisticated machines and men and put through the traffic again. ‘We allowed traffic, including those carrying passengers and empty trucks and oil tankers, from here to Jammu today,’ a traffic police official said. He said since only one-way traffic will continue on the highway, no vehicle will be allowed from opposite direction. However, passengers and truckers alleged that despite one-way, frequent traffic jam is being witnessed on the highway. However, BRO and National High Authority of India (NHAI) are working to put through the highway for both ways, the only road linking the Kashmir valley with the rest of the country. Traffic official said that normal two-way traffic on the highway will be resumed only after receiving green signal from BRO and traffic police officials posted at different places. Traffic on the highway remained disrupted frequently since first major snowfall on January 6, resulting in shortage and price rise of essentials, particularly vegetables in the valley.