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J&K: SSP, National Highway Traffic, removed

As many as 36,000 apple laden trucks have moved towards Jammu from the Kashmir valley in the past 27 days, while 3995 apple trucks moved towards Jammu on Sunday.

Statesman News Service | Jammu |

Following the chaotic movement of apple laden trucks on Srinagar-Jammu highway, J&K government on Wednesday attached Senior Superintendent of Police, National Highway Traffic, Shabir Ahmad Malik, with the Police Headquarters. Mohita Sharma, SP, Ramban district, has been assigned the additional charge of Traffic, National Highway, till the further order.

 

Action against Malik comes after Chief Secretary Arun Mehta on Tuesday reviewed the situation that resulted in thousands of fruit laden trucks stranded on the highway that is being repaired at several points. Unprecedented chaotic movement of trucks amid the bumper crop of apple in Kashmir has been criticised by fruit growers, traders and political leaders.

 

Divisional Commissioner, Kashmir, Pandurang K Pole last night said that almost all Jammu bound trucks were cleared and normal traffic on the National Highway has been restored. The Divisional Administration has made tremendous efforts to ensure that all the trucks stranded move towards Jammu.

 

He said that more than 4000 trucks were sent through the National Highway while 1250 vehicles were diverted through Mughal Road and sent to Jammu. As many as 36,000 apple laden trucks have moved towards Jammu from the Kashmir valley in the past 27 days, while 3995 apple trucks moved towards Jammu on Sunday.

 

Normally the apple production in Kashmir is 17 metric tons but due to abundant rainfall, there has been a bumper crop this time and is expected to cross 21 metric ton.

 

Chief Secretary Arun Mehta has stressed on putting in place a robust communication and information mechanism by the Traffic Police so as to regulate traffic at critical points like Qazigund-Banihal, Banihal Market, Sherbibi, Panthayal, Mehar, and so on.

The traffic management authorities have been asked to augment manpower from all sources to regulate traffic in an optimal manner, besides enforcing lane discipline on the critical stretches between Ramban and Banihal. It has also been decided that suitable recommendations of the joint study by CBRI, Roorkee and IIT, Jammu, be sought for measures to be undertaken for stabilizing traffic flow on Cafteria-Mehar section of NH-44.