Minister for Public Works (R&B), Floriculture and Gardens & Parks Syed Mohammad Altaf Bukhari today held a meeting on the closure of Mughal Road and the preparedness of the department on snow clearance in State. The meeting took place in the office chambers of the Minister and was attended by Commissioner/Secretary R&B, Floriculture, Gardens & Parks, Chief Engineer Mughal Road, Chief Engineers of Mechanical Engineering Department Kashmir and Jammu. After threadbare discussions it was decided that in view of weather conditions and the safety of passengers, the Mughal Road shall be closed for all vehicular traffic from January 1st, 2016 and the efforts of the department should to reopen the road by March 15th, 2016. During the meeting, Bukhari was informed that Mechanical Engineering Department, Kashmir has existing fleet of 111 snow clearance machines. The Minister, however, directed the officers to deploy 14 additional snow clearance machines available with Mughal Road Organization in order to strengthen the existing fleet of snow clearance machines in Kashmir province. These additional machines shall be placed at the disposal of Chief Engineer Mechanical Engineering Department, Kashmir which will give boost to the snow clearance operation in the Kashmir province. The Minister also passed on strict instructions that all the Government institutions should be directed not to use JCBs/Tractors for snow clearance. In case of non compliance of these instructions, the relevant authorities shall impose penalty including seizure of the machines, besides recovery of the double of the cost of damages caused to the roads on this account. The Minister directed the chief engineer mechanical engineering department to ensure all arrangements including readiness of snow cutter machines ahead of snowfall predictions. He also directed him to keep men and machinery ready so that snow is cleared immediately after the snowfall.
2015 Kashmir Despatch