Ladakh safe for tourists?

April 25, 2013 at 10:11 am

In view of recent incursion in Ladakh by the Chinese Army, many tourists planning to head to Ladakh are asking one question, “Is Ladakh safe for tourists?”

Answer to this question is a simple and a resounding, yes!

Incursions in Ladakh by the Chinese Army are nothing new, in fact since 2010, they have occurred 600 times, though most of the time they just come in and go out, instead of staying afoot, like they are doing at the moment.

However, the places where these incursions take place are nowhere near the tourist circuit, so as of now, tourists planning to visit Ladakh have nothing to fear about and there is absolutely no restriction in traveling to places like Nubra Valley, Pangong Tso, Tso Moriri, Dah and Hanu Villages.

Though like last year, inner line permit for places close to LAC eg. Chushul, Tsaga, Chummur etc. remain mostly out of bound and tough (if at all) to procure.

So if you are planning to head to Ladakh soon, don’t worry, go out there and enjoy one of the most beautiful part of India, full of wonderful and cheerful people.

Srinagar – Leh Highway reopens for 2013

April 6, 2013 at 10:11 pm

BRO has fulfilled its promise of reopening Srinagar – Leh Highway today, by reopening it in record time.

Although initially only light vehicles will be allowed to cross Zoji La and chances of the route closing down for a few days in case of snowfall is quite high, it nonetheless goes to show the effort BRO is putting in, to keep this strategic highway open as long as humanly possible.

Even today 100 vehicles from Ladakh crossed over into Kashmir, while 250 vehicles crossed over in to Ladakh, carrying crucial supplies for Ladakh, which has been landlocked for the past 5 months.

Traffic Rules and Restrictions for Rohtang Jot in 2013

April 5, 2013 at 8:54 pm

In a bid to decongest Rohtang Jot and ensure smooth flow of traffic and keep up with the repair work, BRO along with Himachal Government has come out with the following rules for traffic heading to Rohtang Jot.

1. Vehicles from outside Himachal aren’t allowed to go to Rohtang Jot from Manali side, unless they are heading to Ladakh, Lahaul, Spiti or Pangi Valley i.e. those going to Rohtang Jot for sightseeing, have to hire local taxi or bus for the purpose. Those who are planning to go to Ladakh, Lahaul, Spiti or Pangi Valley, have to get permit made from the SDM Office in Manali (free of cost), contact numbers for Manali SDM Office are, 09418460974, 01902254100 and 01902254200.

rohtang-jot

2. Rohtang Jot is closed for repair work on Tuesdays, so apart from traffic heading to Ladakh in the wee hours of the morning or late in the evening, traffic to Rohtang Jot isn’t permitted.

3. Only vehicles going to Ladakh, Lahaul, Spiti or Pangi Valley can go towards Rohtang Jot before 6AM.

4. From 6AM to 11AM traffic would be permitted to go to Rohtang Pass from Manali side, however they will not be allowed to return before 1PM. Only traffic which is coming from Ladakh, Lahaul, Spiti or Pangi Valley and certified by the Kokhsar Check Post will be allowed to go towards Manali.

5. From 1PM to 5PM, traffic will be allowed to return to Manali. However no traffic will be allowed towards Rohtang Jot.

6. After 5PM heavy vehicles will be allowed to ply on the Rohtang Jot route from both sides.

While these rules are certainly going to cause annoyance to tourists visiting Rohtang Pass, they might just help authorities deal with the long jams which plague the road to Rohtang during tourist season each year and results in rising level of pollution and wastage of fuel and time.

Srinagar – Leh Highway to reopen Tomorrow (06-Apr-2013)

April 5, 2013 at 5:44 am

BRO had set a revised date of 5th April, for the reopening of the Srinagar – Leh Highway, earlier this week. However, due to rain and snowfall, road clearance work has been somewhat delayed and hence now the Srinagar – Leh Highway is to be reopened for light traffic a day late i.e. tomorrow, 6th April 2013.

Last year Srinagar – Leh Highway had reopened on the 25th of April 2012 and even at that time it was considered to be pretty early, so despite a couple of minor delays, if BRO manages to reopen the Srinagar – Leh Highway tomorrow (which it should in all likelihood), it would be far ahead of time.

Of course initially the Srinagar – Leh Highway would only be open for light vehicles eg. Cars and SUVs and it would take at least a few days if not weeks for the highway to stabilize enough to let the trucks and buses pass on regular basis.

Srinagar – Leh Highway to reopen on 5th April 2013

April 2, 2013 at 12:02 pm

While the BRO might not have been able to meet the earlier announced timeline of reopening Srinagar – Leh Highway by 31st of March, they are confident that if the weather remains favorable, then the Srinagar – Leh Highway would reopen for light vehicles by the 5th of April 2013 i.e. this Friday.

Of course even 5th April is quite early on in the season, in comparison to earlier years and goes to show the enhancements BRO has made in their infrastructure and manpower to ensure such speedier reopening of this crucial highway to Ladakh.