An important iron tunnel passage at a stretch of the strategic Jammu-Srinagar National Highway was damaged due to heavy shooting stones Thursday evening, even as the highway continued to remain shut due to inclement weather in Jammu and Kashmirs Ramban district, officials said. The incident also left hundreds of vehicles stranded, they said.
“Fresh incident of shooting stones on the highway at Pantiyal has caused damage to the important passage of an iron tunnel set up in the most vulnerable stretch of the strategic 270-km Jammu-Srinagar National Highway,” an official said. According to officials, mudslides and shooting stones struck the highway, the only all-weather road linking Kashmir with the rest of the country, at Mehaar, Cafeteria Moore and Pantiyal areas. “People are advised not to travel on the Jammu-Srinagar highway without confirmation,” an advisory by the traffic police said.
The convoy of Amarnath yatra, which was on its way from Jammu to Kashmir, was also halted at Chanderkoot Yatra Niwas due to the highway blockade. A big boulder rolled down a hill and hit an electric transformer, which was loaded on a truck near Jaiswal bridge in Karool area of Ramban this evening, they said, adding that the transformer fell into the Chenab river. Officials said a bridge over the river at Choudraman village in Warwan tehsil of Kishtwar district also got washed away following heavy rains.
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