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Travel agonies: After daylong protest, tunnel opened late in evening

Photo by Fardad Ali Shah Kator Photo by Fardad Ali Shah Kator [/caption] This correspondent while travelling along with his elderly father to Lahore had reached the northern side of the tunnel at about 1pm. There were hundreds of other passengers who were told by the staff to use the Lowari top route claiming as it was still open. But the passengers started protesting that due to heavy snow it would not be possible for them to cross the pass. They said the government had already announced to open the under-construction tunnel on very Tuesday and Friday after the closure of the Lowari pass route. But the tunnel staff refused to allow them to cross the passageway. Passengers were also not allowed entry to the tunnel from the Dir side. Later, it was learnt that some of the passengers, including women and children, tried to continue their journey via the snow-bound pass but were stranded in the middle and forced to move back. Finally, at about 6pm, the tunnel was opened from the Dir side. When this report was posted at about 7:30pm, the passengers in the Chitral side of the tunnel were still waiting for their turn in the chilling cold. In the morning, the passengers also remained stuck at Kluprisht terminal for hours after the public transport drivers refused to provide them service. The drivers were demanding that the government should increase the fare on the Chitral-Upper Dir route to Rs1,000 per passenger. It may be noted that the government has fixed Rs1,200 as fare from Chitral to Peshawar but the drivers of Hiace wagons plying between Chitral and Dir say on return from Dir they seldom get passengers and face losses. At last, tehsil nazim Chitral persuaded the transporters to resume service saying he would take up the matter with authorities concerned.]]>

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1 Comment
  1. Afsar Jan says

    just a moment ago i talked to my brother who were travelling from Islamabad to Chitral on the Coster who is on his way back from the middle of Lawari Dir side. he told me that the forces deployed Dir side have advised the passengers to go through lawari pass as this is open. the vehicle accordingly moved and have stranded in snow, ladies and children are suffering very hard due to snow and the vehicles are not moving forward due to heavy snow. some have succeeded to move back while large number of vehicles are still stranded in the middle of Lawari. my brother has succeeded to move back and is now near to Dir side tunnel. i talked to him and he informed me that there is worse situation as large number of children and women are there, weather is very harsh and vehicles have stucked there. May God keep all the passengers safe.

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