Thursday, 28 March 2013

Snowfall, rain trigger cold waves in Himachal

Himachal Vacation Travel News
MANALI/SHIMLA: With frequent spells of snowfall and freezing temperature in May end, weather in Himachal seems to have turned ‘uncommon’ which has made life miserable for both people and administration.
Snowfall in Himachal
High hills of Himachal, including Lahaul valley, are getting heavy snowfall on Thursday. Keylong in Lahaul has received 5cm snow; fresh snow accumulation at Gulaba has reached nearly 10cm while it is over 20cm on Rohtang pass. Jalori pass on Kullu-Shimla bypass is also experiencing snowfall while almost all hills in Chamba, Kullu, Kinnaur, Lahaul-Spiti and Kangra with height more than 12,000 are receiving heavy snowfall since Thursday morning. The active western disturbances are causing rain in mid and low hills of the state. The mercury has plunged in all parts of Himachal and its freezing in high altitude areas.
Border Roads Organization (BRO) has lost its predetermined target of April 15 to open Rohtang for vehicular traffic as snowfall has again blocked a large portion of highway which was recently opened. “We had opened 32km Manali-Marhi highway from south of Rohtang and from north side it was 5km beyond Koksar. Frequent snowfall is not allowing us to work continuously and now we’ll have to remove snow from Gulaba (26km) and Koksar one more time,” BRO commander Colonel Yogesh Nair said. On other side, Baralacha-la on Manali-Leh highway is also getting heavy snowfall; BRO will restart its snow clearance operation from Darcha in Lahaul.
Snowfall on higher reaches and cold waves in lower valleys are nightmare for farmers and fruit growers. Snow in Lahaul is delaying sowing of peas, one of the two cash crops of district, apple growers in Kullu, Shimla and Mandi fear damage to apple crop which is on its blooming stage. Bringing slight shivers back, state capital Shimla experienced moderate rain all the day.
In last 24 hours, minimum temperature in Himachal had increased by 1 to 2 degrees Celsius which is again likely to drop by many notches. At 0.5 degrees Celsius, Keylong witnessed coldest night in the state. Minimum recorded temperature in Manali (7.4), Shimla (11.7), Kalpa (4.2), Dharamshala (11.6) and Solan (9.7) was higher than that of Wednesday but forecast is for even more drop in it in next 24 hours.
According to Shimla meteorological office, the active western disturbances shall bring more snowfall and rain in nest 24 hours. “Mid and low hills of Himachal may witness thundershowers and hailstorms in next 24 hours,” weatherman predicted.
Landslide at Nehru Kund
Five years after a devastating landslide had killed nearly a dozen people at Nehru Kund, 7km from Manali, another landslide on Wednesday evening has wreaked havoc in the area. Huge boulders came down on the highway and a vehicle was damaged partially. Luckily nobody was injured in the incident. The area near Nehru Kund is witnessing landslides for a decade. Manali SDM Vinay Dhiman said nobody was injured in the incident and a Tata Sumo that was plying the route was hit by a small boulder.

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