Only one-way traffic on Srinagar-Jammu highway from today


Srinagar: Only one-way traffic will ply on the Srinagar-Jammu national highway, the only road linking the Kashmir valley with the rest of the country, from today due to slippery road conditions.
No vehicle will be allowed to ply from today as traffic on the highway will be allowed on alternative days, a traffic police official said.

He said hundreds of vehicles, including those carrying passengers and trucks with essentials, left Jammu this morning for the Kashmir valley.

He said decision to allow only one-way traffic on the highway was taken as the road had been damaged at several places where only one vehicle can pass at a time and the road also becomes slippery due to below freezing temperature in the morning and evening. Two-way traffic on the highway will be allowed only after the weather improves and there is no threat of landslides and damaged portion of the road is repaired.

Passengers, who had left Jammu early yesterday morning, had reached Kashmir only after mid-night due to frequent traffic jam on the highway. A passenger Bilal Ahmad Mir, who was travelling alongwith his family in his car said they got struck in the Jawahar tunnel for about an hour due to traffic jam.

''We could see several hundred trucks, loaded with essentials, stopped at Batote and other areas on the highway,'' he said, alleging that despite one-way order for heavy vehicles, we saw trucks and oil tankers plying on both sides at several places, leading to traffic jam.

Traffic on the highway remained close for about three days due to heavy snowfall and landslides. However, after the Border Roads Organisation (BRO) cleared the snow and landslides, it was decided to allow two-way light vehicle and one-way heavy vehicle traffic on the highway. However, there was no improvement in the traffic movement and finally from today, it was decided to allow only one-way traffic for all vehicles.

Meanwhile, the historic Mughal road, linking Shopian in south Kashmir with Rajouri and Poonch in Jammu region, remained closed due to five to six feet of snow. The road, which was seen as alternative to the Srinagar-Jammu national highway, will reopen only in summer, the officials said.(UNI)