Helicopter service to Mata Vaishno Devi shrine suspended

Jammu, Jan 8 (IANS) Helicopter service for pilgrims to Mata Vaishno Devi shrine in Jammu and Kashmir’s Reasi district were suspended on Sunday due to heavy snowfall in the Trikuta Hills, an official said.

There has been over two feet of snowfall in the Trikuta Hills and due to inclement weather, helicopter services to the shrine, which is located nearly 14 km uphill from Katra down in the district were suspended, an official said here.

Meanwhile, after remaining closed for three days due to heavy snowfall in Bannihal and Patnitop sectors, the strategic Jammu-Srinagar national highway was restored for two-way traffic on Sunday evening.

“The highway was thrown open to two-way traffic after clearing over 1,000 vehicles stranded at different places on the highway,” said an official of the Traffic Department.

Air traffic to and from Srinagar international airport also resumed on Sunday afternoon after remaining suspended for two days.