Highway ban has been bleeding Kashmir Valley with authorities only saying that they will ease the ban. The restrictions on the movement of vehicles have created lot of problems in Kashmir including price rise. Recently, Supreme Court disposed of a plea challenging the Jammu and Kashmir government’s order restricting civilian traffic for a day in a week on a stretch of the national highway from Udhampur to Baramulla for the movement of security forces. Counsel for the state government told the bench comprising Chief Justice Ranjan Gogoi and Justice Deepak Gupta that the order restricting civilian traffic for a day in a week on the stretch of the national highway was passed due to the ongoing election and will remain in force till May 31.
State Government told SC through its counsel that closure of the highway as on date is for one day in a week, i.e., Wednesday. Additional solicitor general has further submitted that the said closure will be effective only till the end of May, 2019,” the bench noted in its order. Taking into account the reasons that have prompted the state to order for the closure of the highway which is restricted to one day in the week, we are not inclined to keep this petition pending any longer.
The state government had issued an order on April 3 in which it said that keeping in view the Pulwama attack, another car bomb attack on security forces’ convoy at Banihal and movement of forces during the Lok Sabha elections, no civilian traffic movement will be allowed on the NH stretch from 4 am to 5 pm twice a week.
The order had said there will be one “dedicated day every week” for movement of security forces’ convoy when there would be no civilian traffic on the national highway from Baramulla to Udhampur from 4 am to 5 pm.