Shimla receives season’s first snowfall  | india news | Hindustan Times
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Shimla receives season’s first snowfall 

Tourists flock to state’s capital which received two-inch snow; traffic hit

india Updated: Jan 24, 2018 10:29 IST
Saurabh Chauhan
Tourists enjoying season’s first snowfall on the Ridge in Shimla on Tuesday.
Tourists enjoying season’s first snowfall on the Ridge in Shimla on Tuesday.(Deepak Sansta/HT)

Ending a long dry spell, the Himachal Pradesh capital got season’s first snowfall on Tuesday while mid and lower hills received intermittent rain, bringing cheer to tourists and farmers.

As news of the snowfall spread, tourists flocked to Shimla. Places near to Shimla — Kufri and Narkanda — also received snowfall, which turned the tourist destinations more picturesque.

Shimla, which saw a low of 2.7°C, recorded mild snowfall around afternoon, while Kufri and Mashobra recorded moderate snowfall. The day’s temperature in Shimla stayed at 12.2°C.

While Shimla received 2 inches of snow, 5 inches of snow was accumulated in Jakhu, the highest point of town.

The snowy landscape in Shimla will stay for one-two days, an official of the Met Office said on Tuesday.

Shimla Met centre director Manmohan Singh said, “Due to western disturbance, several parts of the state received fresh snowfall. Few places in higher reaches will receive more snowfall in next 24 hours.”

TRAFFIC HIT

Season’s first snowfall hit vehicular traffic in Shimla. Vehicles could be seen skidding off snow-covered roads. Traffic on the National Highway connecting Shimla to Kinnaur was halted at Narkanda. Several lateral roads were also closed later in the day due to snowfall.

The government issued directions to all departments to ensure people face no inconvenience. It also asked the PWD to keep all roads through for traffic. Besides, Irrigation and public health department were also asked to maintain water supply. Vehicular movement was also halted in Shimla town. People remained stranded in offices due to traffic jams.

Snow, however, brought a cheer on the face of tourists as well as locals. Tourism industry was badly affected due to the long dry spell.

A tourist from Ludhiana, Karan Malhotra, said, “We were aware of the snow prediction and planned to come to Shimla. It is amazing to be in Shimla during snowfall.”

Another tourist Amit Mishra from Noida said, “It is my second visit in last two months. Last time it was disappointed to see barren lands in Shimla and around. But snowfall made my day.”

Not only tourists but farmers are also elated with fresh spell of rain, snow. The dry spell had not only delayed the winter practices, but also spoiled prospects of fruit production.

“Fresh spell of rain, snow has revived hope. There was no moisture in the soil,” an apple grower Nand Lal Thakur said.

SNOW, RAIN REVIVE COLD WAVE IN KANGRA-CHAMBA

DHARAMSHALA: Cold wave swept across Kangra and Chamba region of the state as higher reaches experienced fresh bout of snow while low lying areas were lashed by rains.

The weather took a sudden turn in the morning after an hour of bright sunshine causing the maximum day temperature plummet significantly. The maximum temperature at Dharamshala, the district headquarters of Kangra district, was recorded 11.4°C.

The maximum temperature in Chamba was 12.8°C. The Dhauladhar mountains were wrapped in white blanket while Triund, the hill-camp overlooking Dharamshala town, also received over 6 inches of snow till Tuesday evening.

There were also reports of snow in tribal Bharmour and Pangi areas of Chamba district.

(with inputs from Naresh Thakur)