Saturday, April 14, 2012

Fresh snow delays Zojila clearance effort

Fresh snowfall on the strategic 434 km-long Srinagar-Leh highway hindered the ‘Zojila clearance effort’ by Beacon Force of Border Roads Organization (BRO). However, chief engineer BRO, Brigadier Tejpal Singh Rawat expects road opening on April 25

 The Zojila pass, at an altitude of 3530 meters experienced over five inches fresh snowfall this morning. The lower reaches like Sonamarg witnessed almost two inches snowfall in the midst of Beacon chief Engineer, Brigadier  Rawat’s  visit in view of felicitation of BRO jawans for their speedy progress of Zojila snow clearance and maintenance process.

 Brigadier Rawat distributed gifts to three civilian Beacon labourers for their dedication regarding the Zojila clearance process.

“The snowfall hindered the progression otherwise it would have been open for traffic in coming two or three days. Nonetheless, I am optimistic that this road will get opened by April, 25, in-view of normal weather conditions,” Rawat said.

 Interestingly, in the midst  early this year. Last year it was thrown open on May 2.

“We have put extra machines in work to speed up the process. Point 102 has been cleared off and in coming two days, Gumri-highest pass will be cleared off too,” Brigadier Rawat added.

 Zojila experiences heavy snowfall which compels the authorities to close down this highway after November every year. With more than 60 dangerous avalanche sites on this road, Beacon boys have to face brave blizzards, extreme wind, chill and very risky situations while clearing this route to connect it with Kargil sector. Notwithstanding such conditions, the jawans of BRO are also assisted by numerous civilians, who work tirelessly to open the pass in a record time.

 In view of the fact that by April end most supplies in Ladakh dwindle to sustainable levels, this opening will prove to be a boon to all Ladakhis. Ladakh remains cut off from the rest of the country from November onwards when all passes connecting it across the Himalayas are blocked by heavy snow.

 The opening would make available to tourists a cheaper and more thrilling land route to explore upper Kashmir and Ladakh.

 Tourists, this time are thronging Sonamarg and waiting to cross over tourist destinations of Kargil and Ladakh.

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