Srinagar, Mar 28: The Border Roads Organisation (BRO) in Jammu and Kashmir is working against odds in tough terrain to throw open the snow-blocked Srinagar-Leh Highway linking Ladakh region to rest of the country
The BRO personnel are assigned with the task of clearing the snow-bound stretch across Zojila along the 434-kms-long Srinagar-Kargil-Leh Highway. The highway passes through the 11,578-foot high pass Zojila, which lies on the lower depression of the Himalayan range, about 100-kilometres from Srinagar.
The southern face of the Zojila through which the road passes receives huge quantities of snow during winter, cutting off from Ladakh from rest of the country for almost six months. The area received once 60 feet of snow during this winter.
Initiating the snow-clearing task with 36 kms of road stretch from Gangangir village on February 21, the Border Roads personnel reached Zojila pass on March 21 in a record time as last year it was cleared almost up to May.
"Leh Ladakh is an important part of our country. So, we fight all odds to connect this lifeline and transport the essential commodities to that part. Casualties also take place but still we consistently try that it gets connected to us," said B. S. Gangwar, a BRO official.
According to the Border roads officials, when the work on the 434-km-long Srinagar-Kargil Highway gets started, the snow-covered stretch of the road is cleared by experienced laborers who are working in the area for over two decades.
"When we begin with the clearance operations, the biggest challenge that we face is to fix the alignment of the road. The weather is unfavourable as we are working at a height of 12,000 feet. And human endurance also decreases. So in this situation, it is the experience that is valued than the techniques," said Gaurav Gupta, Assistant Executive Engineer, BRO.