Weather To Remain Dry In Kashmir Till March 31: MeT

KO Photo: Abid Bhat

Srinagar: The meteorological department on Wednesday predicted significant improvement in wet weather conditions from Thursday, even as the upper reaches of Kashmir received more snow while heavy rains lashed plains dipping the day temperature sharply.

A meteorological department official said Wednesday that the weather will significantly improve from Thursday across the Union Territory after witnessing four days of snowfall and incessant rains.

“Even as scattered to fairly widespread light to moderate rain, thundershowers and snow has been forecast over Jammu and Kashmir in next 24 hours, the weather is going to be mainly dry from Thursday till March 31,” the official said.

“There is no forecast of any major rainfall activity till ending March,” the official added.

Meanwhile, more snow got accumulated in higher reaches of the valley including famous skiing resort of Gulmarg while the rains lashed plains, officials said on Wednesday. Rains in plains and snowfall in higher reaches started on Sunday afternoon and continued for the fourth running day Wednesday.

In last 24 hours till 8:30 am Wednesday, Gulmarg received 15 cms (6 inches) of fresh snowfall, the meteorological department official,

He said the famous skiing resort in north Kashmir’s Baramulla district recorded minimum temperature of minus 2.5 degree Celsius against minus 0.9 degree Celsius on the previous night.

Srinagar, he said, received 30.9mm of rainfall during the time while mercury settled at 4.6 degree Celsius, same as recorded on the previous night in the summer capital of the J&K.

Qazigund received highest rainfall in Valley—47.2mm in the last 24 hours and recorded a low of 4.0 degree Celsius against 4.6 degree Celsius on the previous night, he said.

Mercury settled at 0.3 degree Celsius against 3.2 degree Celsius on the earlier night at Pahalgam, the famous resort in south Kashmir which also received 26.4mm of rain during the time, he said.

Kokernag, also in south Kashmir, recorded a low of 2.8 degree Celsius against previous night’s 3.6 degree Celsius while it received 32.1mm of rain in the 24 hours, the official said.

The minimum temperature settled at 1.6 degree Celsius in Kupwara against 3.6 degree Celsius on the previous night, the official said. The north Kashmir district received rainfall of 34.8mm during the time, he said. There are reports about water logging in some low-lying areas in the Valley.

Banihal Highway Shut For Second Day

Traffic on the Jammu-Srinagar national highway was suspended for the second consecutive day on Wednesday as landslides triggered by incessant rains blocked the arterial road at over a dozen places in Ramban district, officials said.

Road clearance agencies have pressed their men and machinery and efforts are on to ensure early restoration of the highway, the only all-weather road linking Kashmir with rest of the country, the officials said.

The highway was closed on Tuesday following snowfall in the high altitude areas and incessant rains in the plains in most parts of Jammu and Kashmir over the past three days.

The Jawahar Tunnel the gateway to the Kashmir valley along the highway also experienced an inch of snowfall on Tuesday morning but the Border Roads Organisation (BRO) has cleared the road stretch.

Deputy Superintendent of Police Traffic (National Highway Ramban), Parul Bhardwaj said landslides and shooting of stones form the hillocks overlooking the highway had blocked the road at 14 places between Nashri and Banihal.

Road clearance operation is in progress at all the effected places and we are hopeful of clearing the debris at most of the places by this evening, the officer said.

However, he said a massive landslide spread over 600 metres at Mihard pose a major challenge. A truck is also stranded in the middle and efforts are on to pull it out.

He said there has been a slight improvement in the weather this morning but the skies still remain overcast.

A spokesperson of the Meteorological department said there will be a significant decrease in the amount of rainfall but the system would prevail over Jammu and Kashmir till this evening.

Besides Mihard and Cafetaria Morh, the officials aid the highway is blocked at Chamba Seari, Sita Ram passi, Marog, Battery Cheshma, Anokhi fall, Digdol, Panthiyal, Moum Passi, Gangroo, Salaad, Sherbibi, Shabanbass and Chamalwas.

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