M A I N   N E W S

Outsiders banned from J&K railway work site
Tribune News Service

Jammu, June 27
In an effort to rebuild confidence among those engaged in laying the 233-km rail track between Udhampur and Baramulla in the Kashmir valley, the authorities have imposed prohibitory orders under Section 144 on the entire route to prevent the movement of unwanted elements there.

The action has been taken following striking of work by the railway staff after the killing of an IRCON engineer, Sudhir Pundir, and his brother by terrorists.

However, the engineers were in no mood to resume work until some foolproof security mechanism was put in place on the entire route.

A meeting of top police officers and security forces was covered by Chief Minister Mufti Sayeed in Srinagar yesterday in this regard.

Intelligence sources told this correspondent that it would be a difficult task to deploy round-the-clock security in the interior areas beyond the Salal hydroelectric project that are infested with terrorists of various outfits.

To reach various destinations in the Jammu division and the Kashmir valley after infiltrating into India from Pakistan, terrorists were using many mountainous areas beyond Reasi in Udhampur district, from where the track would pass.

The security forces would have to put in lots of efforts, particularly at Surukot,Laole,Arpinchla, Banihal, Charil, Qazigund, Sadura, Bijbehara, Kakapora, Pattan and Baramula to protect those engaged in the job and also the rail network.

Moreover, it would not be easy tasks to enforce the prohibitory orders in this vast stretch where the engineers would be engaged in work for a long time as a number of tunnels and bridges have to be constructed. A 12.5-km-long tunnel has to be constructed below the Pirpanjal range between Banihal and Qazigund.

The Additional District Magistrate of Ramban in the terrorist prone Doda district has imposed a ban on the entry of any local or outsider at all the places where work on the rail project is in progress. These orders would be applicable for Bunkot, Krawah, Kaskoot, Gund Adalkote, Jagirnamdar, Hagazine Asher Darshipura, Chreel Lambar bridge and the railway station sites en route.

The ADM has ordered the Superintendent of Police to ensure smooth running of the project work at these places, including the camp offices at Krawah, toll post and Halina by strictly imposing restrictions under Section 144 of the Cr.PC.

Most areas on the route were prone to terrorism and as such the Railways authorities have not yet been able to run passenger trains on the 54-km Jammu-Udhampur section on which work was completed about two months ago.

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