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Arrest landslides, shooting stones on Srinagar-Jammu highway: Azad

By Staff
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Google Oneindia News

Srinagar, July 8 (UNI) Concerned over the frequent closure of the 300-km-long Srinagar-Jammu national highway due to landslides, the authorities have taken a number of steps, including constructing a retaining wall at Penthal, the most troubled spot.

The highway, the only road linking the Kashmir valley with the rest of the country, was closed today due to landslides and shooting stones, triggered by rains between Ramban and Ramsu.

The highway was closed for the second time today since the start of the official two-month-long Amarnath pilgrims from July 2.

Chief Minister Ghulam Nabi Azad, who described the road connectivity as crucial for overall development of the state, was told about the measures taken by the Border Roads Organisation (BRO) and other concerned agencies, responsible for the maintenance of the highway.

He was informed that apart from the construction of a retaining wall, measures were being taken to stabilise the area and arresting the falling of the stones from a hill top near Penthals.

Two thousand plants have been planted in the area to arrest landslide.

Highlighting the importance of better road connectivity, Mr Azad said good roads are crucial for overall development of Jammu and Kashmir.

During February-March this year, the highway was closed for about a month because of landslides and shooting stones at Penthal where a hill was sinking. The closure of the highway led to several fold increase in the prices of essential commodities in the valley.

The Indian Air force and Army airlifted several hundred passengers from Jammu and Srinagar while a few thousand covered the trouble portion of the highway on foot to reach their respective destinations.

A number of experts had suggested to blast the sinking hill while others suggest construction of wall.

UNI

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