SRINAGAR: A labourer died while clearing snow in Gurez area of north Kashmir as rain and snowfall continued to shower the Valley plummeting temperature to lower levels. The weather is likely to continue in the same stead for next twenty four hours across under the influence of passage of two western disturbances in quick succession across western Himalayas. The fresh rainfall terminated the record five month long dry spell in Kashmir. The capital Srinagar received the seasons first snowfall.
“We are expecting more snow in higher reaches and rains in plains up to Saturday,” said met official Iqbal Singh.
“Respite from dry weather conditions especially in Kashmir valley is likely to continue for next 24 hours or more,” he added.
The 40-day-long coldest period Chillai Kalan that began on December 21will and remains till January 31. Valley witnessed the chilled night due to recent fresh snow fall and rains in higher reaches from last two days.
Due to the heavy snowfall near Jawahar tunnel, Srinagar-Jammu highway has closed due to the rain and snowfall and will be thrown open once the weather conditions improve, said SSP traffic Srinagar Fayaz Ahmad Lone.
“Srinagar-Jammu highway has been closed till improvement in the weather, snowfall and rain has made the road dangerous for the vehicular movement, once the weather improves vehicles will be allowed to ply,” Lonbe said.
Meanwhile the Mughal road shall remain closed for all sorts of traffic. Apart from heavy vehicles and oil tankers, no passenger or private vehicle will be allowed to ply on Srinagar-Jammu highway during wee hours, he said.
Meanwhile, a labourer working with the Hindustan Constructions Limited (HCC) died while clearing snow for the vehicles near the Damn site in Malikpora near Kanzalwan.
The identity of the labourer was not immediately ascertained.
In Kupwara, the roads leading to border areas including Karnah, Keran and Maachil have been blocked due to snowfall since Wednesday. However adequate stock of ration, kerosene oil, sugar and flour has already been dumped in these areas and people need not to panic, according to Deputy Commissioner Kupwara, Ghulam Mohammad Dar.
“There is adequate stock of essentials available in border areas. In addition, we have set up at least 89 dumping centres at high altitude areas to cater to the requirement of locals in border towns,” Dar told Kashmir Reader.
“Snow will be cleared from the road leading to Kalaroose area in the district by this evening. However roads leading to Keran and other border areas would be cleared for traffic movement only after a good deal of improvement in weather,” he added.
The border areas remain cut off from the district headquarters for at least five months beginning December or January due to heavy snowfall. According to officials, at least three to four feet snow has accumulated on roads leading to Keran, Karnah and Machil.
The electricity supply has remained affected in some areas of district due to the recent snowfall, local residents said. Although the weather improved to some extent this afternoon but according to locals the power supply continues to remain erratic.
“The power department has been asked to ensure the supply according to curtailment schedule. There will be improvement in supply in the areas which witnessed power outages due to snowfall,” DC said.