Highway closed again, air traffic disrupted

Iqbal Kirmani

Srinagar: The Srinagar-Jammu highway was on Sunday again closed for traffic after incessant rain and snowfall caused heavy landslides at various places along the 300 km road, while weatherman has predicted more downpour in next 24 hours.
“About 2400 light to heavy vehicles and 1025 essential services trucks crossed into the Valley on Sunday, but weather turned bad prompting us to close the highway again in the afternoon,” IG Traffic Muneer Khan told Kashmir Reader.
“There is no passenger stranded along the highway,” Khan said.
He said heavy rainfall and snowfall triggered landslides and sliding of shooting stones on the highway between Ramban-Ramsoo sectors. “Due to heavy landslide at Kheri (Udhampur), Moderkote and Gamroo, vehicular movement cannot be allowed,” Khan said.
The highway was opened for the vehicular movement on Saturday after five days and one-way traffic was allowed from Jammu to Srinagar.
The IG Traffic said that they will allow vehicular movement over the highway only after the road is cleared of the blockade. “We will allow traffic from Jammu to Srinagar only if weather conditions improve and we are able to work for the clearance of road,” said Khan, adding that bad weather is hampering the work.
Meanwhile, air traffic too was disrupted due to bad weather, prompting authorities to cancel some flights from the Srinagar airport. “Six flights were cancelled after weather took ugly turn; however ten flights arrived in Srinagar,” SP Airport Manzoor Ahmad told Kashmir Reader.
“If the weather condition remains same we might have to cancel all the flights on Monday,” Manzoor said.
According to weatherman, Srinagar received 14 mm rainfall and 2 cm deep snow till 5:30 pm Sunday.
“Qazigund received 5.4 mm rain and 1 cm snow, Kupwara 20.3mm rain and 2.5cm snow, Banihal 19.2mm rain and 2cm snow,” an official said.