Day 3: Highway remains closed, over 300 vehicles stranded

The Srinagar-Jammu highway remained closed for the third consecutive day on Wednesday while as the fresh landslides at Ramban led to the stranding of over 350 Kashmir bound vehicles.

The 300-km highway, the only road linking Kashmir with the rest of the world, was closed for traffic on Monday due to snowfall and rain at various places coupled with landslides and shooting stones.

Deputy Superintendent of Police (National Highway) Vishal Manhas told GNS said that the shooting stones and landslides which occurred on Tuesday at multiple places including Anokhifall were cleared on Wednesday morning but all of a sudden fresh landslides occurred at Marog near Ramban town which led to the closure of the road for today.

The Border Roads Organisation (BRO), which maintains the arterial road, has pressed its men and machines immediately to clear the landslides in the area, he said.

“Efforts are on to clear the highway of the blockades at Marog,” the official said.

“Over 300 trucks and over 150 light motor vehicles are stranded presently in the area and we are not expecting the road clearance today,” the official said. He said a decision on opening or otherwise of the thoroughfare would be taken tomorrow.

Meanwhile, a weather department official said there was the possibility of rain or snow in some areas in the next 24 hours.

“Light rain/snow would occur at isolated places over the state 24-hours,” the official said.

He said that Srinagar recorded a low of 0.0 and maximum of 7.5 degree Celsius.

He said Gulmarg – the ski resort place-in north Kashmir settled at minus 1.5 degrees Celsius. The ski resort had a low of 0.1 degrees Celsius.

Kargil and Leh townships in Ladakh region recorded a minimum of minus 10.0 and minus 10.8 degrees Celsius and a maximum of minus 1.9 and minus 3.6 respectively, the spokesman said.

The Pahalgam hill resort in south Kashmir recorded a low of minus 8.2 and a maximum of 4.9degrees Celsius.

Meanwhile, administration today issued high danger avalanche warning in Kashmir Valley

“As per a communication of Divisional Commissioner Kashmir, there is a danger of avalanches from February 14 to February 15 in avalanche prone areas of Bandipora, Baramulla, Anantnag, Kulgam, Budgam, Kupwara, Ganderbal, Leh and Kargil districts of Kashmir Division,” an official in a statement issued here said.

“The Deputy Commissioners of the concerned districts have been asked to advise people not to venture out in avalanche prone areas”.

Meanwhile, on the basis of information received from SASE, High danger avalanche warning has been issued by SASE for Furkian-Z Gali, in Kupwara District and Baramulla district, including Gulmarg sector, the official said.

Medium danger warning has been issued for Kupwara-Chowkibal-Tangdhar, Bandipora-Kanzalwan-Gurez and Low danger warning for Ramban, Ganderbal, Anantnag, Kargil, Leh districts and Srinagar-Jammu National Highway, the official said.

People living in these avalanche prone areas have been advised by the Disaster Management Authority to take precautionary measures, the official added (GNS).