Friday September 24, 2021

Stuck in traffic

July 28, 2021

It is nice to see that many Pakistanis are now travelling to northern areas to boost tourism in the region. For a majority of the locals, tourism is the only source of income. Keeping in view the importance of tourism for the country, it is essential that visitors have a comfortable trip. However, on social media, the picture is the opposite. Recently, many people who were travelling to the Kaghan valley were stuck on the Mansehra-Naran-Jalkhad road. Some people had to spend their nights in their cars. Some booked hotel rooms at exorbitant rates. For many people, the worst experience was running out of fuel and not being able to refill their fuel tanks. The higher authorities have to look into this issue.

Visitors come to these places to spend some quality time and enjoy their vacations. Such experiences will discourage people to give a second chance to the country’s beautiful tourist spots. The authorities should consider developing an app where prospective visitors can get information about their visit, especially the region’s weather conditions. To avoid traffic jams, the authorities should set up a system that allows only those vehicles to pass through a given point that have got themselves registered (through the app). This should not be an issue as the country is already using e-tags for vehicles that run on motorways. A visitor’s e-tag will be valid for selected days. The authorities need to take constructive steps to deal with this situation. If they continue to ignore it, there will come a time when travelling to popular tourist spots will become even more difficult. For the last 20 years, we have been hearing about the cases of the worst traffic jams in Murree, but the authorities haven’t taken any steps to come up with a solution.

Syed Hussein El-Edroos

Islamabad