Srinagar, March 11:
Despite the rain, the 270-km-long national highway, the only all-weather road connecting Kashmir valley with the rest of the country, was through on Thursday for two-way Light Motor Vehicles (LMVs) while only Jammu bound Heavy Motor Vehicles (HMVs) will ply from Qazigund.
Last night the traffic department had said that in view of inclement weather prediction issued by the Met department for the next few days, there are chances of a blockade of the Srinagar-Jammu national highway. Therefore, the department said that people are advised to avoid the journey on the highway.
However, a traffic police official said today that despite the rain the highway was through for traffic. LMVs were allowed to ply from both sides, he said adding HMVs will be allowed to ply from Zig Qazigund in south Kashmir towards Jammu.
But, he said, LMVs from Jammu will have to pass Nagrota between 0500 hrs to 1000 hrs and Jakheni Udhampur between 0600 hrs to 1100 hrs.
Similarly, Jammu bound LMVs were directed to cross Zig Qazigund between 0800 hrs to 1200 hrs, he said adding no vehicle will be allowed after cut off timing from both sides.
He said HMVs will be allowed to leave for Jammu from Qazigund only after the last LMVs will pass Banihal.
Traffic official said the national highway, the only link between the Union Territory (UT) of Ladakh and Kashmir remained shut due to the accumulation of snow and avalanches since January Ist, this year. There was fresh snowfall at Sonamarg and Zojila pass during the past 36 hours.
Meanwhile, there is also no change on the historic 86-km-long Mughal road which remained closed since December last year though the Mechanical Engineering Department (MED) has started snow clearance operation despite the threat of avalanches.
Traffic official said there is a forecast for rain and snow which could trigger landslides and shooting stones on the highway during the next 48 hours.