Cold intensifies in Kashmir
Gopal Sharma/Fayaz Bukhari
Jammu/SRINAGAR, Jan 12: The Jammu-Srinagar National Highway shall remain closed for traffic tomorrow while cold conditions intensified in Kashmir valley.
SSP Traffic National Highway Shabir Malik said that on January 13, vehicular movement on Jammu-Srinagar highway will remain suspended due to massive landslide and continuous shooting stones at Mehar near Ramban.
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“People are advised not to undertake any journey on Jammu-Srinagar NHW till the restoration work is completed. Even LMVs will not be allowed either from Kashmir or Jammu side on Thursday,” the SSP added.
He said during midnight and up to morning about 2000 trucks/ LMVs were cleared towards Kashmir valley but again road was blocked at the same point. The debris and boulders at Mehar were cleared and highway restored in the morning. The movement of loaded trucks and fuel tankers was allowed towards Kashmir. But it was blocked again at around 1.30 pm and since then it could not be restored till late this evening. He said about 200 Kashmir bound loaded trucks and tankers were stranded near Mehar and main Chenab bridge in Ramban sector.
The SSP said that LMVs were being allowed via Maitra and old Chenab bridge but heavy vehicles on both sides are stranded. They will be cleared first, Malik added
On Friday, the highway got blocked and remained closed for three consecutive days due to heavy snowfall and landslides at several places. The road was partially thrown open for stranded vehicles on Monday after clearing landslides and improvement in the weather.
Meanwhile, Mughal Road, connecting Shopian with Poonch and Rajouri districts, remained closed for vehicular movement in view of snow accumulation at Peer Ki Gali.
Srinagar- Kargil-Leh road remained shut for vehicular movement in view of snow accumulation on Zojila axis and has been closed till further orders. Kishtwar-Sinthan road also remained closed in view of heavy snowfall.
Meanwhile, intense cold conditions continued in Kashmir with Srinagar recording a low of minus 3.6 degree Celsius today.
A Meteorological Department official said here that the minimum temperature in Srinagar dropped from previous night’s 0.2 degree Celsius and was 1.5 degree Celsius below the normal.
Gulmarg recorded a drop of nearly one degree Celsius as mercury settled at minus 11.5 degree Celsius against minus 10.6 degree Celsius the previous night.
Pahalgam, recorded a low of minus 11.6 degree Celsius against minus 10.4 degree Celsius last night. Qazigund recorded a low of minus 5.3 degree Celsius against minus 0.6 degree Celsius the previous night. Kokernag recorded a low of minus 7.2 degree Celsius against minus 1.7 degree Celsius the previous night.
Kupwara recorded a minimum of minus 5.5 degree Celsius against minus 3.0 degree Celsius the previous night.
Leh recorded a low of minus 13.9 degree Celsius against last night’s minus 12.9 degree Celsius while mercury at Kargil settled at minus 14.7 degree Celsius. Drass recorded a low of minus 27.2 degree Celsius, almost three times lower than the last night’s minus 24.2 degree Celsius.
The weatherman has forecast dry weather at most places in Jammu and Kashmir till January 16.
He said there would be gradual rise in day temperature and fall in night mercury. The MeT also urged people putting up in snowbound areas to be wary of avalanches.
Kashmir is presently under the grip of 40-day long harshest period of winter, known locally as ‘Chillai Kalan, which started from December 21. It is followed by a 20-day long ‘Chillai Khurd’ and a 10-day-long ‘Chilla Bachha’.