Surge in vehicular traffic at ATR & water leakage in Aut Tunnel
Shimla, Sept 20
Himachal Pradesh is witnessing a sudden surge in vehicular at Atal Tunnel Rohtang and there is some water leakage in the Aut tunnel on NH-3, was stated by the state government in the state assembly on the third day.
Replying to a query raised by the Surendra Shourie (Banjar) of BJP during the question hours Public Works Development Minister Vikramaditya Singh said that state government is ensuring the maintenance of the National Highway and Tunnel. He said that Aut Tunnel (Kullu) has been in operation for more than 15 years. However, Water leaks were reported at some places inside the tunnel during the rainy months. At present, this tunnel is a single tube and is being used for traffic in both directions.
He said that during the ongoing up gradation of Chandigarh Manali NH-3 to four lanes another tunnel is being dug parallel to this tunnel. According to the Concession Agreement, it is currently proposed to repair the tunnel but this work would be started after the completion of the new tunnel and diversion of traffic. In the existing tunnel leakage would be controlled and water would be channelized.
Replying to another query raised by Ravi Thakur of Congress, the Chief Minister said that owing to increase in the vehicular traffic, the graph of crime is not increasing in the Lahaul Spiti district but the number of theft cases has increased in the temple and monasteries. He said that traffic inflow in the District Lahaul & Spiti has increased after the opening of ATR, and a large number of tourists are visiting this valley.
In the year 2022 over 12 lakh vehicles traveled through the ATR. However, the crime rate has not increased in the district. To maintain traffic, law & order properly, sufficient police force has been deployed at ATR. He said that if there would be additional need more traffic police would be provided. However, CM said that there is no need to create a post of Dy. SP at Udaipur.
The District Command and Control Center is maintaining a sharp vigil and surveillance on the vehicles passing through the tunnel. The requirement of funds under Machinery & Equipment for the year 2024-25 has been projected for finalization in the Annual Development Budget 2024-25. Since the commission of ATR in the last five years 163 cases of thefts in temples and monasteries have been registered in the State.
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