Doda-Kishtwar highway turns into death trap

Though there is no rain in the entire Chenab region for the past one week, the 115-km stretch of the Batote-Doda-Kishtwar national highway has been in a pathetic condition. It has turned a death trap for thousands of people who regularly commute through the road.
Doda-Kishtwar highway turns into death trapThe authorities are not bothered about the loss of lives in road accidents as the region is being neglected by the government.
On May 14 this year, Chief Minister Mufti Mohammad Sayeed in his maiden visit to Doda announced the release of Rs 12 crore for the repair and renovation of the Batote-Doda-Kishtwar road, but nothing much has been done since then.
After a few hours of rain, the highway becomes a death trap and commuters remain under a constant threat of landslides and landslips on the road.
Amir Khan, a medical employee, said: “The road has been reduced to half due to accumulation of debris all along the stretch. The sinking road at several places halts the traffic for hours daily.”
“Sunken patches, recurring landslides with shooting stones have turned the road into a death trap and travelling on it has become a nightmare,” said a taxi driver.
Executive Engineer, Public Works Department, Doda, Bhushan Thasoo, said: “About 15 km of the 55-km stretch had been swept away. We have made its plan and are submitting the data of damaged portions to the agency concerned for approval.”
“We have received Rs 1.5 crore for repairing major damaged portions of the road in Doda and the work would be completed soon,” he said.
According to reports, about 100 persons have lost their lives and 500 received injuries in various roads accidents across the districts of Doda and Kishtwar in the past two years.