Transporters, commuters on the receiving end of farmers’ protest
The continued blockade of the main highways connecting several northern states to the national capital Delhi has left commuters high and dry.
Due to the farmers’ indefinite protests, most of the regular commuters are avoiding travelling to Delhi, and those who have no other option, are facing several difficulties in reaching the National Capital.
Hundreds of goods carriers are lined up on the slip roads of NH-44 as the drivers are waiting for the blockade to be lifted to resume their journey. “We were taking ply-boards to Delhi from Yamunanagar. We have decided to wait here as it is difficult to travel Delhi due to the protests,” said Gurdial Singh, a truck driver sitting on a roadside dhaba near Karnal.
Since there is no clarity on how long the blockade of the two main highways of NH 1 and NH 10 will continue, people are hesitant to take these routes.
“On a regular day, over 40,000 vehicles pass the NH-44. But in the last three days, there has been a 50% decline in the movement of vehicles on this highway,” said an employee of Bastara toll plaza, on the condition of anonymity.
He said that not only private vehicles, commercial vehicles have also been affected due to the blockade on Haryana-Delhi border.
With the state government banning the movement of roadways’ buses from Haryana, Punjab and Himachal Pradesh, especially at a time when the movement of trains is already restricted due to the pandemic, the regular travelers are the most affected.
“Yes there is a big impact of this blockade on small traders, especially the traders of electronics goods as most electronics items come from Delhi,” said Harish Dhawan an electronics shopkeeper from Yamunanagar.
Police officials deputed to monitor the traffic on highways said that due to the blockade of NH 1 from Rai in Sonepat to Singhu border, most commuters are traveling via Eastern Peripheral Expressway and Kundli Manesar Expressway.
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