Snowfall fallout: Govt orders rationing of petrol, diesel after supplies dry up in Kashmir
Srinagar: Snowfall hit Kashmir is fast running-out of the fuel prompting the authorities to announce the rationing of petroleum products as stocks are fast drying up given the closure of Jammu-Srinagar National Highway.
Divisional Commissioner Kashmir PK Pole has asked all tehslidars and TSOs to ensure that no fuel station issues more than three liters of petrol to two wheelers and five liters to three-wheelers. The government has asked the pump station not issue more than 20 liters of diesel to heavy commercial vehicles including buses and trucks.
“Three liters of petrol shall be issued to two wheelers, five liters to three wheelers and 10 liters to private four wheelers. Twenty liters of fuel shall be issued to commercial four wheelers and heavy motor vehicles including buses and trucks,” Pole said in the order.
Divisional Commissioner noted that LPG cylinder shall be issued to consumers only after 21 days against proper acknowledgement and record.
“All the concerned line departments’ shall conduct extensive market checking to crack whip on the person indulging in overcharging, black-marketing or profiteering. Concerned tehslidar and TSO shall make surprise visits and ensure the implementation of these directions and report through concerned deputy commissioner accordingly,” he said.
Traffic on Srinagar-Jammu National Highway remained suspended for the third day due to snow and fresh landslides from Jawahar tunnel area to Ramban.
Sources said the highway has suffered extensive damage and it will take at least one week to restore traffic.
Around 4500 vehicles, mostly trucks carrying essentials to the valley, are stranded at several places along the 270km stretch. “Jammu-Srinagar highway continues to be blocked due to snow accumulation at Jawahar Tunnel and Landslides and mudslides at several places,” a traffic police official said.
Mughal Road, which connects the Shopian with Poonch district has also been closed due to heavy snowfall. Srinagar-Leh highway has been officially closed on the orders by Divisional Commissioner Kashmir on December 30.
A MeT official said that Srinagar received 8 cms of snowfall in the last 24 hours, while Qazigund, the gateway town of Kashmir, recorded the highest depth in the plains across Valley—29.8cms—during the time and 80cms (32inches) in the last 48 hours.
Pahalgam and Kokernag recorded 18 cms and 26 cms of fresh snowfall in the 24 hours respectively.
Reports said many roads and lanes are still clogged with snow even as the divisional administration pressed men and machinery into service. The snowfall has also led to disruptions in essential supplies to Srinagar.
Weatherman has forecast more snowfall in the next 24 hours and a “significant” improvement from January 6.