Srinagar-Jammu highway remained closed for 66 days last year following landslides and shooting stones while from November 7 onward, it has remained blocked for 29 days.
A senior official at the Traffic department said that from January 1 to December 31, 2019, the Srinagar-Jammu highway remained closed for more than 66 days.
The landslides and shooting stones are the main cause behind the closure of highway, the official said.
“From the season’s first snowfall on November 7 last year, the highway has been closed for more than 29 days, leaving thousands of vehicles stranded on the road,” he said.
The official said Digdole, Monkey Mode, Maroog, Panthiyal, Nashri, Anokhifall, Battery Chesma, Nehari, and Mompassi are the worst landslide-prone areas where the highway remained blocked during most of the days.
“The stretch between Katra and Banihal has been the main problem. At a number of locations, it’s just a little better than a patchwork of mud and rocks,” the official said.
Even though the four-laning of the highway has been completed from Jammu to Udhampur and the work is moving further forward from that side of the highway, the work from Kashmir side is still going on at a snail’s pace.
The construction of the new Banihal-Qazigund tunnel is unlikely to be completed this year.