Srinagar: Traffic on the Srinagar-Jammu national highway, the only all-weather road connecting Kashmir valley with the rest of the country, was suspended on Monday to undertake major repair work and road widening.
Traffic on the highway was resumed only on Sunday after remaining suspended for 18 hours due to landslides and shooting stones.
Meanwhile, despite massive snow clearance operation, the historic 86-km-long Mughal road, linking Shopian in south Kashmir with Rajouri and Poonch in Jammu region, remained closed due to heavy snowfall since November 6.
”We have suspended all traffic on the Srinagar-Jammu national highway on Monday”, Inspector General of Police (IGP) Alok Kumar said this morning.
No vehicle will be allowed from Jammu or Srinagar today, he said, adding that the National Highway Authority of India (NHAI) and Border Roads Organisation (BRO) has undertaken a massive repair work of the road which has been badly damaged due to recently landslides and shooting stones, particularly between Ramban and Ramsu, including at Digdol, he said.
The IGP said the agencies are also working on road widening at several places.
Traffic on Srinagar-Jammu national highway was closed on Friday night following landslides between Ramban and Ramsu. However, the highway was put through only on Sunday morning after 18 hours.
The highway, the only lifeline of Kashmir, often gets closed due to landslides and shooting stones since NHAI started widening of the road. However, traffic on the highway also gets disrupted due to snowfall during winter.
The frequent closure of the highway leads to shortage of essentials, particularly fresh vegetables and other essentials in the valley, where prices of essentials besides airfare also witness sharp increase when the highway closes.
A massive snow clearance operation was going on to put through the Mughal road, which has been closed on November 6 due to heavy snowfall.
Snow clearance operation was badly affected due to fresh snowfall, official said, adding that it may take some more days to allow traffic provided there is no more snow. The road, which is seen as alternative to Srinagar-Jammu national highway, remained closed during winter months due to heavy snowfall.