Highway connecting Ladakh with Kashmir, road to Gurez to reopen soon

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March 9: Due to less snowfall this winter, the national highway connecting Ladakh region with Kashmir and road to Gurez near Line of Control (LoC) in north Kashmir will reopen soon, provided there is no fresh snowfall.
However, it will take more time to put through the historic Mughal road, linking Shopian in south Kashmir with Rajouri and Poonch in Jammu region.
Official sources said that snow clearance operation was going on a war footing on both sides of the Zojila pass on the Srinagar-Leh national highway, which has been closed since December last year due to snow and slippery road conditions.
It will take a week or so to clear the snow on the strategically important road, they said, adding that if there is no fresh snowfall or avalanches, the road will reopen soon. There was less snowfall this winter and the mercury has also witnessed sharp increase now.
The Border Roads Organisation (BRO) has put into service sophisticated machines, including snow cutters and men to clear the snow, particularly on Zojila pass, where the Union government has already approved construction of a tunnel to make it all weather road.
However, traffic will be allowed on the highway only after road repair work is completed. Vehicles will have to pass through four to six feet of wall on both sides of the road.    Meanwhile, the Indian Air Force (IAF) has been asked to increase the sorties between Srinagar-Kargil and Jammu-Kargil to evacuate the stranded passengers.
Snow clearance operation on Bandipora-Gurez road was also going on war footing.      If there is no fresh snowfall, the snow clearance operation will be completed within next few days, the sources said adding normal traffic will be resumed any time next week after remaining suspended from December last year.
This will be for the first time that Ladakh highway and Gurez road will reopen in the month of March, they said.

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