Raja Syed Rather
Ganderbal, Nov 18: The National Highways and Infrastructure Development Corporation Limited (NHIDCL) has not agreed to open the open Z-Morh tunnel on a trial basis due to several safety and technical parameters.
Earlier, Deputy Commissioner Ganderbal Shyambir Singh had claimed that the tourist destination Sonamarg will be open in winter and the Z-Morh tunnel will also be opened on trial from November 15. On Wednesday, he said that the process is going on and a decision will be taken in a day or two.
The NHIDCL started work on the 6.5 km long Z-Mor tunnel in 2015 and its deadline was fixed in 2021. Starting from Gagangir, the tunnel ends at Shutkadi via hung point, Haji Kabar and Cachar modes.
According to official sources in NHIDCL, 20 percent of the tunnel work is still incomplete and they did not open it although the administration wanted them to open from November 15.
“The situation in the tunnel is not good yet but if the administration persists, we can allow some limited vehicular movement and that too in case of landslide in potential areas such as hung point closure,” he said.
He also said that there are certain technical parameters because of which it was not possible to open the tunnel to traffic at this time.
“There are always some checks and balances. The tunnel safety team has already informed us that it is not so safe and therefore is not to be opened,” he added.
On the other hand, Deputy Commissioner of Gandarbal ,Shyambir Singh said, “The tunnel will be thrown open within a short span of time. We have some work pending and after finishing everything we will open the Z-Morh tunnel for the public.”
According to NHIDCL, the tunnel will be completed by December 2023.