Jammu-Srinagar highway closed due to landslide; intense cold in parts of Kashmir
The Kashmir valley is under the grip of 40-day harshest winter period known as 'Chilla-i-Kalan' which began on December 21 last year. Many parts of the Valley have received heavy snowfall and some areas have also witnessed rainfall.
The Jammu-Srinagar national highway was closed for vehicular traffic due to a landslide in Ramban district on Wednesday, news agency PTI reported. The 270-kilometre stretch is the only all-weather road linking Kashmir with the rest of the country.
The landslide took place at Duggi Pulli near Chanderkote, the PTI report said. Many heavy motor vehicles (HMVs) and light motor vehicles (LMVs) are stranded at different points on the highway, it added.
The local officials PTI spoke to said that men and machinery have been deployed to clear the debris in the area.
The highway was cleared for vehicles just days ago after multiple landslides between Chanderkote and Ramsu and snowfall in Banihal sector on Sunday.
Most parts of the Kashmir valley are experiencing intense cold wave, with the temperature dipping to sub-zero levels. In Gulmarg, the mercury fell to minus 10.4 degrees Celsius on Wednesday.
Srinagar, the summer capital of Jammu and Kashmir, recorded a low of 1.3 degrees Celsius - down from 1.8 degrees Celsius the previous night.
Pahalgam, which also serves as the base camp for the annual Amarnath yatra, recorded a low of minus 5.6 degrees Celsius - down from the previous night's minus 2.8 degrees Celsius, said officials.
The Kashmir valley is currently under the grip of the 40-day harshest winter period known as 'Chilla-i-Kalan' which began on December 21 last year.
The chances of snowfall are the most frequent and maximum during this period and most areas, especially in the higher reaches, receive heavy to very heavy snowfall.
The 'Chilla-i-Kalan' will end on January 31, but the cold wave continues even after that in Kashmir with a 20-day-long 'Chillai-Khurd' (small cold) and a 10-day-long 'Chillai-Bachha' (baby cold).