The vehicular traffic on Manali- Leh road was restored on Monday after remaining blocked with heavy snow for nearly eight months.
The teams of Border Road Task Force (BRTF) have cleared the road of snow and opened it for vehicular traffic.
Four hundred eighty five kilometers long road, passing through high mountains and high altitudes have several glaciers like Baralacha and highest Tang-Lang- La pass on the way.
This road is of immense strategic importance and provides border link with Leh in Jammu and Kashmir, bordering China. The road is also popular with adventure tourists as a large number of them travel on the road on motor-bikes and other vehicles as adventure travel.
The Border Road Organization (BRO) had deployed BRTF to clear snow from glaciers on this road to open the road.
A BRO source said the Jawans of the organization had already cleared major portion of the road by May 31st and only about 10 kms road was left to be cleared. This year it took twenty two days extra to clear snow from the road as it was cleared on May 18, 2018. .
The Himank unit of the BRO cleared the road from Leh side till Sarchu, the last place in Himachal Pradesh touching border with Jammu and Kashmir.
The Manali – Leh road is an alternative route to transport Army supplies for the Indian Army stationed in Leh as other road passing through Jammu – Kashmir passes through the Zozila pass, which also remains blocked with heavy snow during winters and become slushy during summers and rainy season.
The Army authorities always look forward for early clearing of this road since they replenish essential items like diesel, petrol, ration etc for next winter from plains for the Army units stationed on the China border.
The Commander of BRTF Colonel Uma Shankar said, “The road has been opened on Monday but only Army vehicles would be plied on this road for next few days after which the Lahaul – Spiti administration would take a call to allow tourist vehicle on the road.”