JAMMU: In an official press release, the J&K Government said that “elaborate arrangements” made for the convenience of the public on the national highway were quite successful on the first day of the traffic prohibition order on Sunday.
“As per the latest reports received from districts, the movement of civilian vehicles in Kashmir Division and Jammu Division remained normal in all interior roads except for the NH, where only exempted categories of vehicles were seen plying. As per the reports gathered from the DCs of Pulwama, Anantnag, Budgam and Baramulla, special permission passes were given to 128, 210, 45 and 110 vehicles, totalling 493 vehicles, falling in the exempted categories,” the government said.
The press release added, “Further, a very large number of vehicles were allowed to cross the NH at various crossings in all districts. In Srinagar, over 2,000 civilian vehicles crossed Pantha Chowk towards various destinations along the national highway. Further, normal civil traffic movement was observed in various areas including Tengpora, Shalteng, Parimpora, Nowgam, Batamaloo, Sanatnagar, Bemina Chowk, Hyderpora, Chanpora and Narbal crossing where over 10,000 vehicles crossed the NH unhindered. In Anantnag, around 3,000 vehicles crossed the NH at various crossings.”
The statement said that “Many people used alternate roads, especially the old NH where available, and other internal routes to commute and also to reach Srinagar, thus completely avoiding the NH. It is pertinent to mention that students appearing in various exams also reached in time as their roll number slips were treated as passes. All emergency cases, medical or otherwise are being cleared without any delay. Doctors and businessmen who have to attend their establishments on the NH were allowed without any problem. From the overall proceedings of the day, it appears that the movement of vehicles was hassle free, although heavier on alternate routes.”
The statement went on to explain, “The restrictions are, in any case, applicable up to 31st May 2019 only. The total duration of prohibition is for 26 hours out of 168 hours in a week, which is 15% of the time. Further, the total number of restricted days is just 15 during this entire period. 8 of these are Sundays. The State Administration is committed to ensure the least inconvenience, particularly on the two notified days, i.e. Sundays and Wednesdays. This should set at rest any misgivings and also give the true situation on the ground on Day 1 of the restriction.”