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Jammu-Srinagar road reopened


Mukhtar Ahmad In Srinagar | March 01, 2005 21:57 IST
Last Updated: March 02, 2005 01:22 IST


The Jammu-Srinagar National Highway was partially opened to traffic on Tuesday.

It had been closed for 12 days following snowstorms and avalanches in the region.

5,000 houses damaged in avalanches

Of the 1,500 vehicles stranded for the past 15 days, 200 reached Srinagar while 300 vehicles with petroleum products, liquefied petroleum gas and other essential supplies were expected to reach the state capital later in the night, Consumer Affairs and Public Distribution Minister Taj Mohiuddin said.

He said the remaining 1,000 vehicles carrying essential supplies would proceed to Srinagar on Wednesday and Thursday.

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The valley is facing shortage of essential supplies as its only surface link with the rest of the country had snapped due to the heavy snowing.

The Border Roads Organisation, which maintains the highway, has advised the administration against allowing passenger buses on the road for the time being as snow avalanches are feared, Taj said.

He said even vehicles carrying goods to Jammu would not be allowed to proceed from Srinagar for two days, as authorities would like to clear the stranded vehicles first.

Meanwhile, three foreigners have gone missing in the upper reaches of Gulmarg. They had gone for skiing. The foreigners, two from Finland and one Canadian, left Gulmarg for the sunshine peak overlooking the Gulmarg valley on February 2.

The rescue efforts have been hampered due to fresh snow fall in the area.

However, the chief executive of Gulmarg development authority Farooq Ahmad Peer said the foreigners were "expert skiers and therefore had good chances of survival."

With PTI inputs


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