Mangaluru: The undivided Dakshina Kannada district is strategically placed, surrounded by ecologically sensitive hilly terrains of the western ghats.
The road connectivity to the district depends on a limited number of passes like Shirur, Kollur, Balebare, Agumbe, Gangamoola (Kudremukh), Charmadi, Shiradi, Bisile and Sampaje ghats.
If any of these ghat roads is affected, the load is shifted to the others. But in the case of travel to Mysuru and Bengaluru, the ghat roads on the eastern and southeastern side are very important passages.
Of them, the Shiradi ghat road is currently under restoration and upgradation. Hence the traffic to Bengaluru is resorting to Charmadi and Sampaje ghats.
Heavy rains affected these two vital routes on Monday. A landslide at the 8th curve resulted in the mud falling on to the road and blocking the traffic for many hours.
Similarly, a tree fell on the Koynad bridge near the Ganapati shrine at the boundary between DK and Kodagu on Monday. Traffic was blocked for over an hour.
But for the enthusiasm shown by the immediate residents in joining hands with the forest personnel in cutting the tree and clearing the road, the jam would have continued for longer hours.
There are no firm indications as to when the Shiradi ghat will be ready for use. Until then, the hardships faced at the other ghats are likely to continue.