The Jammu-Srinagar national highway remained closed for the fourth straight day as authorities said work to clear landslide debris was still in progress, IANS reported on Thursday.
“No traffic will be allowed on the highway as road clearance operations are on at Battery Cheshma and some other parts of the road,” an unidentified traffic department official told the agency. Authorities said the highway would be cleared by Thursday afternoon.
At least 2,000 vehicles remain stranded on the 300 kilometre-long stretch. People stuck in traffic say they have run out of money as hotels and shopkeepers have been charging exorbitant rates, IANS said.
Flight prices from Jammu to Srinagar have also soared after landslides blocked the highway – the minimum price for a one-way ticket is over Rs 9,000 .
Meanwhile, the Jammu and Kashmir Public Service Commission has decided to postpone the Combined Competitive (Mains) Examination scheduled for February 15 and 17 due to the snowfall and closure of the highway and other roads, Greater Kashmir reported on Thursday.
The Jammu-Srinagar highway is the only all-weather road that connects the Kashmir Valley with the rest of India. It has been closed for traffic since Monday after Kashmir experienced the season’s first snowfall, causing landslides at Anokhfall.