Odishatv Bureau

New Delhi: The Indian Air force (IAF) has cleared 12 National Highways (NHs) including two passing through Odisha as emergency landing airstrips which will enable rescue teams to reach affected areas easily.

Jamshedpur-Balasore highway and Chattarpur-Digha highway are among the 12 NHs cleared for being developed into airstrips.

The IAF has given clearance to 12 NHs to be developed into emergency landing airstrips out of total 21.

Other highways are: the Kishanganj-Islampur highway in Bihar, Delhi-Moradabad highway in Delhi-Uttar Pradesh, Bijbehara-Chinar Bagh highway in Jammu and Kashmir, Rampur-Kathgodam highway in Uttarakhand, Lucknow-Varanasi highway in Uttar Pradesh, Dwarka-Maliya highway in Gujarat, Kharagpur-Keonjhar highway in West Bengal and Mohanbari-Tinsukia highway in Assam.

The thickness of tar will be increased and highways will be made strong enough for aircraft to land.

The NHs will be open for public during normal times, but in case of emergency, normal traffic will be blocked and the stretch will be used for aircraft landing. Also, alternate ways will be created for the normal traffic flow during emergencies.