Highways closed as Valley receives snowfall
Temperature witnesses slide as chill increases
Srinagar: Most of the plain areas in Kashmir experienced the season’s first snowfall on Monday, even as the higher reaches witnessed heavy precipitation, leading to the closure of Jammu-Srinagar and Srinagar-Leh road which connects the valley with Jammu and Ladakh respectively, officials said here.
The Jammu-Srinagar National Highway was closed for traffic due to fresh snowfall and landslides in Ramban district, officials said.
Over 300 vehicles have been stranded due to the closure of the highway.
The 270-km highway, the only all-weather road linking Kashmir with the rest of the country, was blocked by a landslide in Ramban district, they said.
Traffic has been halted due to snowfall at Jawahar tunnel, they said, adding men and machinery have been deployed to clear the area.
People are advised to undertake journey on the highway only after confirming the status of the road from traffic control units, a traffic police advisory said.
The MeT office has issued an ‘Orange Colour’ weather warning for the higher reaches of JK and Sonmarg -Zojila axis on the Srinagar-Leh road, asking the administration and people to be prepared and to maintain vigil.
A MeT official said light to moderate snow with heavy falls at isolated places was reported from many areas of Kashmir, a few places of Jammu and Sonmarg-Drass axis.
The famous ski-resort of Gulmarg, in north Kashmir, recorded four inches of fresh snowfall during the night, while Pahalgam tourist resort in south Kashmir, recorded 10 cm of snow, the official said.
He said most of the areas in the plains of the valley also received light snowfall — which is the season’s first.
It was still snowing, especially in the higher reaches, when the last reports came in and the weather system is likely to continue, he said.
This spell is most likely to give good snow/rain in the Pirpanjal area Gulmarg, Ramban-Banihal, Shopian, Poonch-Rajouri and Zojila especially during November 24-25 and decrease thereafter significantly, the official said.
Many areas of the valley were also lashed by rains, he added.
The fresh snowfall has forced the closure of Srinagar-Leh road as well as Mughal road the alternate roadway connecting the valley with the Jammu region, an official of the Traffic Control Room said.
Meanwhile, the Bandipora-Gurez road was also closed for traffic following heavy snowfall in the region.
Authorities said that they have ordered closure of the 86 Km Bandipora—Gurez road following fresh snowfall across Gurez valley in north Kashmir’s Bandipora district.
An official said that the road has been closed on Monday morning after fresh snowfall across Gurez including Razdan Top.
He said that keeping in view slippery conditions and fresh snowfall, the Bandipora—Gurez road has been closed as a precautionary measure.
Notably, the road was thrown open for one way traffic movement just a few days ago after hectic efforts by the authorities.
Pertinently, the road usually remains closed during winter months due to heavy snowfall in the area.
Meanwhile, the Mughal road, connecting Shopian and Poonch districts with Shopian in south Kashmir was also closed amid fresh snowfall along the thoroughfare, officials said on Monday.
DySP Surankote Mohammed Khaliq Choudhary told that the road has been closed as it was snowing in the area. “The road would be opened depending upon weather conditions”. (with inputs from PTI)