The under construction Rohtang tunnel, that was opened for residents of the tribal district of Lahaul-Spiti in case of emergency, has been closed due to heavy snowfall in the area, The Tribune has reported.
According to the report, decision to close the tunnel was taken by the Border Roads Organisation (BRO) to ensure public safety as the passage from Lahaul side towards the north portal of the Rohtang tunnel is prone to snow avalanches.
The tunnel served as an alternative for residents of Lahaul-Spiti to move in and out of district in emergency cases after the Rohtang pass was closed for vehicular movement in November last year. Now the residents will be dependent on the helicopter service being provided by the state government to airlift patients and people in emergency cases.
As per the report, BRO removed the bailey bridge plates laid on the Chandra river near the Gufa Hotel from Lahaul side, which led to vehicular movement being halted on the tunnel.
BRO informed the district administration to ask locals to refrain from coming into the area. People were also advised not to venture out due to fresh snowfall in the area which is now prone to avalanches, told Amar Negi, Sub-Divisional Magistrate, Keylong.
He informed that the people were reportedly putting their lives at risk by trying to cross the area on foot to reach north portal of tunnel.
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