Tourists arrive in Shimla by the hordes to bring in the New Year
The promise of snow around the New Year has lured a large number of tourists from different parts of the country to Shimla. As such, the iconic Mall Road and The Ridge were jam packed with tourists on Monday.
Shimla Hotel And Restaurant Association president Sanjay Sood said “Hotel occupancy is almost 100% in Shimla due to the holiday season. Many hotels have been booked in advance and New Year ’s eve and New Year’s day will surely bring in still more tourists. Most of the tourists are from Delhi, Punjab, Haryana and Chandigarh.”
Jaspreet of Mohali, who is visiting the hill station with his friends, said “The temperature is very low here but we are enjoying and are ready to bring in the New Year. We hope that it snows on New Year’s Eve, which will make our celebration more exciting.”
Nidhi, another tourist from Delhi, said, “It will be exciting to kick off the new year with snowfall.”
Shimla police say all arrangements are in place to offset any inconvenience to tourists. In an advisory, Shimla police have requested the tourists not to create any ruckus in town as stern action will be taken against the offenders under the Himachal Pradesh Police Act. Tourists have also been advised to take care of their belongings, especially mobile phones, purses and wallets as the police received a number of complaints of personal belonging being misplaced last year. Tourists have been advised to avoid consuming liquor and smoking in public places, including The Mall and The Ridge as drinking and smoking in public place is an offence in Shimla and such areas are under surveillance cameras.
Snowfall is expected to occur at higher and middle hills of the state, including some popular tourists destinations in Shimla, Manali, Kufri and Dalhousie, which has also increased the expectations of tourists.
Himachal meteorological director Manmohan Singh said “Snowfall and rain in the state are likely to continue till January 4 after which the weather will remain dry.”
Chandigarh Chandigarh administrator Banwarilal Purohit on Wednesday gave in-principle approval for a synthetic running track at Sukhna Lake. UT adviser Dharam Pal, said, “The Chandigarh Heritage Conservation Committee had earlier given its go-ahead for the proposal. Next, the detailed plan and cost estimates will be prepared; and then, tenders will be floated for the project.” A UT official said the proposed track is part of the administration's efforts to give Sukhna Lake a major facelift.
The National Highway Authority of India has approved two over-bridges, which are likely to reduce travel time between Kalka and Zirakpur and alleviate traffic jams on the stretch by next year. NHAI has already floated tenders for the 60-m wide over-bridges, which will be constructed at a cost of ₹50 crore. It has invited bids for the “construction and site improvement of the four-lane national highway (NH-22) on the Zirakpur-Parwanoo junction.”
Fifteen students had a narrow escape after their school bus skidded into a waterlogged open drain in Daulat Singhwala village in Phabat area of Zirakpur. The bus, which was ferrying students of Blue Bird High School, Sector 16, Panchkula, was making way for another school bus when it skidded into the overflowing drain. The bus tilted in the drain, but passersby and parents were able to rescue the children through the driver's window.
Tricity residents woke up to heavy rainfall for the second time this month on Wednesday. Three people went missing after a taxi, shuttling two commuters, was swept away in a flashflood in the Patiala-Ki-Rao rivulet as the driver attempted to cross the causeway in Tanda Village near Nayagaon. The owner of the vehicle, Rakesh Kumar told the police that Gaurav had called him saying two people, travelling to Baddi, had booked his cab.
Chandigarh received 97mm rainfall between 6am and 8.30am, the heaviest rain in July since 2017, as per the India Meteorological Department. It received another 0.9mm of rainfall during the day. The maximum precipitation till 8.30am was recorded at the Sector 39 observatory (97mm), 49.2mm rain was recorded at the airport observatory, 77.5mm rain in Panchkula and 74.5 mm rain in Mohali.