Address highway issues on priority

Address highway issues on priority
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The 270-km long Srinagar-Jammu highway has remained closed for 35-days during the past three months. This closure has caused immense loss to Kashmir economy.
According to the media reports during these 35 closure days Kashmir suffered a loss of roughly Rs 3,325 crore, which is about Rs 95 crore a day on an average.
These alarming figures should open the eyes of the people at the helm so that work on turning this only highway into all weather road is expedited.
The Srinagar-Jammu highway has been under construction since 1947 and till date many attempts have been made to turn this road into an all weather road but attempts have not been successful.
Landlocked Kashmir Valley is entirely dependent on this highway for supplies of essentials and other commodities. Its closure for days together this year led to shortage of everything in the Valley.
Now the weather has improved. Work on the rough patches on this highway needs to be carried out in double shifts to prevent the closure of this highway again and again. Even one day of precipitation is enough to block this vital road link.
There have been reports that the National Highways Authority of India, which has been assigned the task of turning this highway into a four-lane road has carried out the haphazard expansion and this has led to landslides being triggered frequently. The NHAI should learn from its mistakes and try to put the things at their place to avoid embarrassment again.
Making the highway motorable even during inclement weather conditions is a tough job but the advances which have been made on the technological fronts during the past few years has made it possible to come up with solutions which can make things work.