Commuters bewail tardy announcement of ATR closure

Report by: 
V SENTHIL KUMAR
RANGAT
9 Jun 2018

The last minute announcement of road closure from Jirkatang to Middle Strait (NH-4) for urgent repair of landslide-hit stretches left many commuters on the Andaman Trunk Road stranded on Saturday. Tourists on their way from Diglipur, Mayabunder and other areas in the North and Middle Andaman region found themselves stuck at Baratang, while islanders planning to visit mainland and Port Blair during the weekend were left bothered. However, the administration arranged a special ship to ferry passengers from Baratang in Middle Andaman by afternoon today.
“As landslides are common in different locations on the ATR stretch between Jirkatang to Middle Strait, the District Administration should have planned in advance for repairs and communicated the closure. Residents of Port Blair learnt about the decision last evening, while residents in the North and Middle Andaman region were caught unaware. Locals and visitors from mainland started their travel on Saturday morning as per schedule only to know about the road closure at Baratang. The Shipping Department took a prompt decision and arranged a special trip for stranded passengers, but such situation could have been avoided,” said a commuter.