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Traffic suspended on Kashmir highway in view of PM’s visit


SRINAGAR : Traffic on the national highway, connecting the Kashmir valley with the rest of the country, was suspended today for security reasons in view of Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s visit to Jammu to inaugurate Chenani-Nashri tunnel on Srinagar-Jammu road.
Besides dedicating the tunnel to people, Mr Modi is also scheduled to address a public meeting at Udhampur. Today, traffic was to ply from Jammu to Srinagar since only one-way traffic is allowed on the highway for the past about three months, a traffic police official said.
However, as announced earlier, vehicles were allowed from Jammu up to 0500 hrs, he said, adding that the highway has now been closed. He said hundreds of vehicles, including trucks, carrying essentials, and passengers left Jammu before 0500 hrs and are on way to Kashmir.
No vehicle was allowed from Srinagar, he said. Only one-way traffic is being allowed on the highway since January as landslides and shooting stones had badly damaged the road at several places, where only one-vehicle can cross at a time.
The Border Roads Organisation (BRO), responsible for the maintenance of the highway, is working to repair the damaged portion of the road and resume both way traffic.
Meanwhile, the national highway, linking the Ladakh region with Kashmir, remained closed for the past four months due to accumulation of snow, particularly on Zojila pass. However, BEACON authorities have already started massive snow clearance operation to put through the highway.
Major snow clearance operation has also been launched from both sides of Peer-ki-Gali on historic Mughal road, connecting Shopian in south Kashmir with Rajouri and Poonch in Jammu region. Similarly, snow clearance operations were underway in north Kashmir to connect cut off far-flung and remote areas, including those near the Line of Control (LoC), with their respective district headquarters.

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