ZojiLa Pass connecting Srinagar and Leh opened for this year

The Border Roads Organisation (BRO) opened the strategically located ZojiLa Pass on Srinagar-Kargil-Leh road on April 21, 2021. The Pass was opened this year after a closure of 110 days, as compared to average of 150 days in previous years. Located at a height of 11650 feet, Zojila is a strategic pass that provides vital link between Kashmir Valley and Ladakh and is the key to operational preparedness of the Armed Forces. The Pass normally closes by mid-November every year, with the onset of winters when the temperatures dip to subzero degrees and opens only by end April the next year. Average closure of pass in earlier years has been 150 days. The renewed focus on infrastructure development of border areas mandated requirement of keeping the closure of ZojiLa Pass to the minimum. Accordingly, the ZojiLa Pass was kept open till December 31, 2020 and snow clearance operations recommenced on February 7, 2021 by Projects Beacon and Vijayak of the BRO. The connectivity across ZojiLa was initially established on February 15, 2021 and it was planned to open the Pass for Army and civil traffic by end February or early March.
However, continuous bad weather conditions, poor visibility and heavy snowfall resulted in triggering of avalanches, thus delaying the opening. Finally, after herculean efforts by Projects Beacon and Vijayak of BRO, the connectivity was reestablished on April 21, and ten trucks, carrying essential fresh supplies moved across the ZojiLa Pass towards Kargil, thereby bringing much needed succor to the people of Ladakh. The Pass was opened this year after a closure of 110 days, as compared to average of 150 days in previous years. Director General Border Roads (DGBR) Lieutenant General Rajeev Chaudhry commended the officials of Project Beacon and Vijayak in achieving this feat. It will facilitate availability of essential goods and supplies for people of Ladakh, who are dependent on air traffic due to closure of the Pass as also easier movement of Army convoys. He reiterated BRO's commitment to be in the forefront in nation building and be the best construction agency in the extremes.

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