Heavy snowfall blocks Jammu-Srinagar Highway

November 14th, 2008 - 9:14 pm ICT by ANI  

Srinagar, Nov 14 (ANI): Heavy snowfall blocked traffic on Jammu-Srinagar National Highway on Friday as Kashmir valley received the first snowfall of the season.
The strategic 300-kilometre-long National Highway 1-A is the valley’’s juglar vein connecting Indian Kashmir with rest of the country.
A large number of vehicles, mostly trucks and lorries carrying essential supplies and fruit in and out of the valley are stranded in various sections of the highway.
“We commute through this route every year. We were not expecting this kind of snowfall and we are stranded here. Though the government authorities are doing their best, let us see how much time it takes for the road to reopen. At times it takes two to four days also,” said Charanjeet Singh, a truck driver.
The continuing inclement weather has hampered the snow clearing work by Border Roads Organisation, which is responsible for upkeep of the highway.
Weather office has forecast more rain and snow during the next two days.
All incoming and outgoing flights including two Haj flights from Srinagar, had to be cancelled due to bad weather.
The snowfall has affected normal life in the valley with locals preferring to stay indoors. Many feel that heavy snowfall ahead of the seven-phased elections beginning from November 17 might hamper polls also.
“This is not the snowfall season, but snow is falling. If it continues like this, elections cannot take place. They would have to be postponed,” said Manzoor Ahmed, a resident.
The upper reaches of Jammu and Kashmir have been receiving snowfall since Thursday, with the state’’s famous ski resort Gulmarg, covered with almost two-feet of snow.
Moderate snowfall was also reported from tourist resorts of Sonamarg and Pahalgam. (ANI)

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