Highway to Shimla reopened after demolitions at Kalka

March 19th, 2009 - 12:47 pm ICT by IANS  

Shimla, March 19 (IANS) Driving between this Himachal Pradesh capital and Chandigarh, Delhi or elsewhere in the plains is once again pleasurable for motorists as the National Highway (NH) 22 has been reopened after the authorities demolished encroachments on the road at Kalka.
The Haryana government Tuesday closed the stretch in Kalka town to carry out demolitions of the encroachments on the highway on the directions of the Punjab and Haryana High Court. The encroachments used to form the main bottleneck on the highway.

Kalka town is on the Himachal Pradesh-Haryana border.

“This (Thursday) morning traffic (on the stretch) is normal. Our buses are plying to and fro as per normal schedule and route,” Himachal Road Transportation Corporation Managing Director T.C. Janartha told IANS.

He said one-way traffic was restored Wednesday, a day after the demolitions.

The traffic moving from Shimla towards Kalka was diverted to Nahan and Nalagarh from near Dharampur town in Solan district.

Traffic moving from Chandigarh, Zirakpur and Ambala towards Shimla was diverted to Kala Amb from Panchkula.

National Highway Authority of India (NHAI) officials said encroachments by nearly 250 shops were removed in Kalka.

Earlier in January this year, the NHAI planned to remove encroachments on both sides of the road to widen the NH-22 at Kalka but shopkeepers and residents got a stay on this from the Supreme Court.

However, in March the Supreme Court ordered that the NHAI could continue the demolition without damaging the original properties of the people.

The NHAI has been directed by the high court to submit a report on the demolitions at the earliest.

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