Shimla’s Mall turns to ice sheet and slush

Shimla : Civic authorities have once again let down the people of Shimla by not clearing the streets of Shimla of snow in a proper manner .

Despite four days of sunshine in Himachal Pradesh the Mall and the Ridge at many places is still covered with snow , ice and mud making it hard for hordes of locals and tourists to walk here .

You can often see many tourists slipping , falling and hurting themselves .

As usual the authorities boasted before the snowfall that they were prepared to deal with snowfall . But they have failed once again .

These pre-snowfall boasts came from chief minister the PWD and horticulture ministers followed by the DC and the Shimla municipal authorities , but they have all been exposed .

Old timers say it hardly takes any time for a gang of labourers to clear the snow from the Mall , Ridge and other streets but the authorities haven’t been able to do even such a small task .

“Instead of shovelling of the snow at all places on the Mall this time mud has been scattered on the snow here making the street dirty and slushy,” said one local .

“Imagine falling on this muddy slush ,” said another .

Even the street outside Oak Over the official residence of chief minister P.K.Dhumal is coated with snow , ice and mud making if very difficult to walk on this road .

Somebody said the chief minister and his staff isn’t bothered claring this road of snow as his winter sojourn for the next fortnight shifts today to lower Himachal .

Many main roads across much of the snow covered hill state still continue to be unfit for plying vehicles even though snow has been cleared of these roads in the past couple of days.

Late Thursday a state roadways bus skidded of one such slippery road killing eleven and injuring 25 in Shimla district’s Chopal area.

Many of the snow bound areas still remain cut of from the rest of the state . Power has not been restored in many of these places due to snapping of power cables .

The weather man has forecast more snow across the state from Sunday onwards . And the authorities are bound to let down the people once again .

In a 20 year career published widely. He has worked for the BBC, AFP, The Statesman, IANS and the Business Standard . Known for his hard hitting writing and occasional off-beat stories. He lives in Shimla.

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