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Kashmir shivers amid fresh snowfall

Primary, Middle Schools Closed; Road, Air Traffic interrupted; Met office forecasts more snow, rains; ‘Hailstorm, thundershowers expected at some places’

Srinagar, Mar 10: An overnight whooshing of western disturbance, erupting from the Mediterranean Sea, Monday resulted in fresh snowfall and rains across Kashmir, plummeting the temperature by several notches.
Due to the fresh snowfall in upper reaches and continued rainfall in plains, winter chill returned to Kashmir, forcing the government to order closure of primary and middle schools for two days.
Across Kashmir, normal life was partly crippled as roads in the summer capital and other townships remained waterlogged, with people preferring to stay indoors.
With incessant rains and snowfall resulting in sudden drop of temperature, people had to go back to winter attire as Pheran and Kangri took the centre-stage once again.
In the wake of snowfall, government ordered closure of schools up to 8th class for two days. All the schools will remain closed on March 10 and 11, a government order said.
According to officials of Meteorological Department, the summer capital, Srinagar, recorded a rainfall of 46.3 millimeter and a snowfall measuring three inches during the past 24 hours.
While the gateway town of Qazigund received 34.4 mm of rainfall and 3.6 centimeters of snow respectively, the tourist resort of south Kashmir, Pahalgam, received 46.2 mm rainfall and 30 cm of snow. Kokernag town received 13.0 mm rain and 3 cm of snowfall.
The frontier district of Kupwara recorded 15.5 mm rain and 10 cm of snowfall. Banihal received 46.5 millimeters of rainfall.
The highest rain and snowfall was recorded in north Kashmir’s tourist resort Gulmarg with 40.6 mm of rain and 19 inches of snowfall.
According to reports, Tulail region in north Kashmir’s Gurez has received 3 ft snowfall and there were apprehensions of landslides.
Officials forecast heavy rain and snowfall at isolated places over the state during next 36 hours. “Hailstorm accompanied by thundershowers may also occur at isolated places,” a MeT official said.
The bad weather conditions, the official said, will continue till March 12.
“Higher reaches are likely to witness moderate to heavy snowfall,” he said. “Plains would receive light to heavy rainfall.”
The official added, “Hailstorm may also occur at isolated places across the state.”
Director MeT office Sonam Lotus had on Sunday attributed the rainy weather pattern to western disturbances.
While officials have measured little snowfall, reports said there was light to moderate snowfall in Shopian, Kulgam, Mughal road, Pahalgam, Pulwama, Aharabal and Tral, while as the Pir Panjal areas received heavy snowfall.
Aharabal received 16 inches, Kulgam 6 inches, Shopian 6 inches, Mughal road 1 ft, while as Pulwama, and Kulgam received 2 inches snow during the intervening night of March 9 and 10.
The Mughal road and Anantnag-Kishtwar roads have been closed again due to heavy snowfall.
Main and link roads across south Kashmir remained waterlogged.
In Gurez, minor landslides occurred at some places. However, no damage was reported.
SRINAGAR-JAMMU HIGHWAY
One-way traffic on the 300 kilometer long Srinagar-Jammu highway was Monday morning stopped briefly due to a landslide in Panthal area. However, according to officials, stranded vehicles were allowed to move from Jammu to Srinagar after the landslide was cleared.
The road remained closed till 10 am.
“Over 5500 passengers as well as goods vehicles plied from Jammu to Srinagar,” Inspector General of Police (Traffic), Muneer Ahmad Khan, told Greater Kashmir.
He said on Tuesday traffic would be allowed from Srinagar to Jammu “subject to weather and road conditions.”

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