Srinagar, Jan 17 (IANS) After remaining closed for five days, the Jammu-Srinagar national highway was opened for traffic on Friday. Thousands of vehicles were stranded on the highway as heavy snowfall caused landslides at some places.
The stranded vehicles from Jammu were being allowed to move to Srinagar, which will be followed by allowing the stranded Srinagar-bound vehicles, police said.
There were 85 light motor vehicles, 3,000 trucks and other heavy vehicles stranded on the highway. First, the light motor vehicles were allowed to move and then the stranded trucks will be permitted to move, said police.
“Our priority is to clear the back log of the stranded vehicles before the normal resumption of traffic on the highway, Muzaffar Ahmed, Superintendent of Police (Rural) told IANS: “This year the highway has closed on multiple occasions due to land slides triggered by incessant rains. The most vulnerable patch is Digdol, 150 kms from Jammu.”
The Jammu-Srinagar highway is the only road link connecting Kashmir with the rest of the country. It’s closure causes shortage of essential supplies in the valley leading to a lot of inconvenience to the people.
After heavy snowfall for two consecutive days, the valley has witnessed a break since Thursday. But, this has brought a drop in the night temperature, which continue to remain sub zero — around minus one degree — in Srinagar.
The freezing night temperature has converted snow into sheets of ice on the roads at many places in the valley making them slippery and causing difficulties for the pedestrians.