Highway closure triggers essentials shortage in Kashmir

A traffic police official said snow clearance operation was completed from Banihal to Qazigund on the highway, but Ramsoo-Ramban stretch is still filled with landslides. (DH File Photo)

The strategic Srinagar-Jammu national highway remained closed for the fifth consecutive day on Sunday, as fresh landslides and shooting stones hampered the debris clearance operation.
 
A traffic police official said snow clearance operation was completed from Banihal to Qazigund on the highway, but Ramsoo-Ramban stretch is still filled with landslides. “Clearance operation is continuing on war-footing,” he said and added until road clearance operation was completed, traffic will not be allowed to move on the 264 km-long highway.
 
The highway was closed after heavy snowfall and landslides. Ten people were also killed in the area in an avalanche and landslide. Due to continuous closure of the highway, the only road link connecting Kashmir to rest of the country, supplies have run short in the landlocked Valley.
 
However, officials said, air traffic resumed normally on Sunday after remaining affected for four consecutive days due to heavy snowfall and poor visibility.
 
Heavy snowfall on Wednesday and Thursday badly hit the delivery of services in Kashmir with power, road and health services worst affected. Fearing that the restoration of the highway could take more days, the administration Thursday evening ordered rationing of petrol and diesel in the valley. 
 
An order issued by Divisional Commissioner, Kashmir has directed petrol pumps not to supply more than three litres of petrol per vehicle per day and just 10 litres of diesel to commercial vehicles until further orders.

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Highway closure triggers essentials shortage in Kashmir

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