Snow in Himachal throws life out of gear

Heavy snowfall Monday covered several parts of Himachal Pradesh, including this popular resort town, in a thick layer of white for the second day, throwing life out of gear.Shimla has recorded the heaviest spell of snowfall in a span of 24 hours since 1990 in the month of February. While the highest point in the town, Jakhu, recorded over 60 cm of snowfall, the downtown area recorded 40 cm.

The mercury slipped by 0.6 degrees from Sunday’s maximum temperature of 3.3 degrees Celsius, even as electricity outages continued to plague this power surplus state Monday.

Dark snow clouds over the city and a fierce northern wind could bring more snow, the weatherman said.People could be seen trudging long distances while some were playing in the snow.‘This heavy snowfall has more or less compensated for the long dry winter,’ said a local.No traffic could be seen on the streets and most people walked in the snow to reach their place of work. Attendance was thin in government offices. Newspapers and milk could not be delivered in most of the homes.Traffic on the Kalka-Shimla national highway was normal, bringing hordes of tourists to the town. However, it was blocked beyond Shimla in the resorts of Kufri and Narkanda, which were under a heavy white blanket.Almost all the roads in Shimla and Kinnaur districts are under heavy snow with hundreds of vehicles, including buses, stuck on the roads.Snow continued to fall Monday at Kufri, Narkanda, Chail, Manali and Dalhousie among other places.The snowfall was heavier in the higher reaches of the state where life has come to a complete halt. No loss of life has been reported so far.Farmers, who were disappointed due to the drought in the last two months, are celebrating the wet weather, which will help bring a good yield. Some 90 percent of the hill folk live in villages and agriculture is their livelihood.

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  1. says: Ravinder Makhaik

    @ Kelvin Dave

    The Christmas-New Year festive week is normally the period when the region (Shimla, Kufri and Narkanda) normally used to get its first snowfall, but impact of global warming appears to have upset the weather cycle here too, and the first snows get down on very erratic schedules.

    Of late, some winters have gone without any snow at all in Shimla.

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