Kashmir highway closed due to snowfall, Leh and Mughal roads remain shut

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Srinagar, Jan 5: The Kashmir valley remained cut off on Saturday from the rest of the country since Friday afternoon due to closure of the 300-km-long Srinagar-Jammu national highway due to moderate to heavy snowfall besides slippery road conditions.
Meanwhile, the national highway, the only road connecting Ladakh region with Kashmir valley and historic 86-km-long Mughal road, linking Shopian in south Kashmir with Rajouri and Poonch in Jammu region remained shut for the past about a month. These roads are likely to reopen in April.
The Srinagar-Jammu national highway, the only all weather road connecting Kashmir valley with the rest of the country remained closed due to heavy snowfall at several places, including both sides of Jawahar tunnel, Banihal, Shaitain Nallah and Qazigund, a traffic police official told UNI.
He said traffic was suspended on the highway yesterday afternoon due to snow and slippery road condition. It was still snowing today also disrupting snow clearance operation launched by Border Roads Organisation (BRO), responsible for the maintainance of the highway. Since there is prediction of more snow during the next 24 hours, traffic will be resumed only after receiving green signal from the traffic police and BRO officials posted at different places.
Meanwhile, official sources said large number of Jammu bound trucks, mostly trucks who could not pass Jawahar tunnel yesterday when the road was closed are stranded at Qazigund and Anantnag. Over 1100 trucks and oil tankers had crossed the tunnel till 1400 hrs yesterday.
They said passenger vehicles, stranded between Anantnag and Qazigund, gateway of Kashmir on the highway, will be urged to return to their respective places, including Srinagar, till the highway is put through.
Only one-way traffic is allowed on the highway for the past about a year to avoid traffic jam in view of the road widening work besides frequent landslides.

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