CHITRAL: The agony of traveling of the local residents is not yet over as the Lowari Tunnel is not being opened for commuters round-the-clock during winter even years after its completion.
A group of Chitral residents told reporters that though the load of traffic from different parts of the country to Chitral remains minimum in the winter, the passengers were forced to stop near a hotel in Upper Dir for eight hours at night.
This year, they said, a very thin traffic was seen from Chitral towards the down country in the wake of the Covid-19 pandemic, but the new schedule issued to cross the Lowari Tunnel inconvenienced the commuters.
According to the schedule to be effective till March, the tunnel is closed from 7am to 9am, 1pm to 2pm, from 6pm to 7pm and 10pm to 6am every day.
The commuters said that on the pretext of ongoing work in the tunnel, the passengers were stopped about an hour’s travel from the tunnel on the Upper Dir side.
They said there was no work being done inside the tunnel and stopping the commuters midway was nothing but tantamount to exposing them to harsh weather, with women and children the worst sufferers.
The commuters called upon the prime minister and chief minister of KP to take notice of the unnecessary closure of the tunnel and ensure its opening round-the-clock.