Heavy snowfall greeted people in Himachal Pradesh on Saturday with tourist places like Manali and Dharamsala coming to a standstill causing the northern region to witness an intense cold wave. Temperatures dropped lower in Uttar Pradesh and the adjoining NCR region due to rainfall at some places along with heavy snow in neighbouring states. According to the meteorological department, more thunder showers and dense fog are expected in the region. The visibility dropped to below 10 metres at some places.
Rain also lashed other areas like Palampur, Solan, Nahan, Bilaspur, Una, Hamirpur and Mandi, bringing down the temperatures. The officials have also been advising tourists not to venture into remote areas as chances of heavy snow were high.
In Shimla and Manali, electricity was snapped at many places due to damaged power lines. Apart from this, traffic services in Himachal were left disrupted. Friday night’s snowfall was the first significant snowfall in Shimla. According to the Met office in Shimla, certain areas like the Mall Road, the Ridge, the US Club and Jakhu hills had accumulated more than a foot of snow. Director General of Police Somesh Goyal spoke to IANS and said it was after decades that Shimla received so much of snow.
The weather forecast said western disturbances — storm systems originating from the Caspian Sea in the Central Asia and moving across the Afghanistan-Pakistan region — would remain active till Sunday with chances of more snow, reports IANS.
Even in Srinagar, air and land connectivity services remained suspended after moderate to heavy snowfall in parts of the city. All flights to Srinagar international airport were cancelled and all inter-district roads remained disrupted on Friday, reported IANS. The area around the official residences of Chief Minister Mehbooba Mufti and some of the state cabinet members too had no electricity because of massive power failure. The chief minister had also expressed displeasure at the administrative preparedness in dealing with snowfall.