Islamabad: Next week, Prime Minister Imran Khan is expected to open the vitally critical Gilgit-Skardu Road. According to sources, the prime minister may travel to Skardu on December 9 for the inauguration of the 167-kilometer project, which was apparently finished after four years.

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After languishing in the archives since 2009, work on this project began in 2017. However, it should be noted that the road project was completed without the tunnels and alignments that were originally part of the Frontier Works Organisation’s upgrading plan (FWO).

It’s worth noting that the project’s tender was published a second time to cut costs after the first one, which was anticipated to cost over Rs. 45 billion when it was tendered to a Chinese firm.

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The new Jaglot to Skardu route has been enhanced with a variety of upgrades, including road expansion and construction on previously unpaved areas. Travelers utilised the old road to reach Skardu because it was treacherous, with hairpin twists and tight passageways, and it required highly competent drivers, primarily locals who knew the path.

Due to the poor state of the road, tourists either flew to Skardu or drove to other parts of the country’s north. The road was built by the Frontier Works Organisation in 1984, but it has broken down due to the area’s frequent landslides and high snowfall each year.

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Given the number of people who want to visit Skardu, the amount of traffic on the route, and the number of tragic incidents that occur each year, renovating the road was necessary to ensure a safe passage and enhance tourism. The road from Jaglot to Skardu is a patch of more than 160 kilometres which connects Gilgit and Skardu, both of which are important cities in GB.

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