JAMMU, MAR 03
A massive landslide led to the blocking of crucial Jammu-Srinagar national highway near Banihal town in Ramban district of Jammu and Kashmir. Boulders fell from a hill running alongside the serpentine highway onto the road and then rolled into a deep gorge. The Jammu and Kashmir Traffic Police said the highway was blocked at Shabanbas area. The highway is the only road link connecting Kashmir with the rest of the country.
Meanwhile, MeT has forecast widespread light to moderate rain and snowfall in Kashmir Valley from Sunday night to March 8.
“As expected, light rain/snow occurred at some places Kashmir. Currently, weather is overcast to cloudy at most places of Kashmir & at some places of Jammu,” a meteorological department official said..
“Current weather likely to continue till tomorrow morning. Thereafter, weather likely to remain partly cloudy during March 4 and 5th,” he said, adding, “Another Western Disturbance is likely to affect J&K during 6th (night) to 8th due to which we expect widespread Light to Moderate Rain/Snow( mainly over higher reaches).”
He however said that there was no forecast of any significant weather till March 7.
Meanwhile, Jammu recorded a low of 14.0°C against 11.1°C on the previous night, the official said. The temperature was 1.7°C above normal for the J&K’s winter capital during this time of the year, he said.
Banihal recorded a low of 4.6°C, Batote with 0.8mm of rainfall had a minimum of 4.9°C while Bhaderwah recorded a low of 4.6°C, the official said.
Ladakh’s Leh recorded a minimum of minus 4.6°C against last night minus 6.4°C on the previous night while automatic Kargil station at recorded a low of minus 9.0°C. Drass, the second coldest place in the world after Siberia, recorded a low of minus 11.7°C against 17.8°C on the previous night, officials said.
Gulmarg received fresh snowfall while rains lashed some parts of Jammu and Kashmir including this summer capital. With overnight cloud cover, the night temperature hovered around above freezing point in all observatory places of the meteorological department barring the Gulmarg.
The meteorological department official said that Srinagar, the summer capital of J&K, had traces of rainfall since overnight while as the summer capital of J&K recorded a low of 4.6°C against last night’s 4.8°C.
Qazigund, the gateway town of Kashmir, had 0.4mm of rain and recorded a low of 0.9°C against 2.0°C on the previous night, he said.
Kokernag, also in south Kashmir, had a low of 0.9°C against 1.4°C on the previous night, the official said.
Pahalgam, the famous resort in south Kashmir, recorded a low of 0.5°C against minus 0.8°C last night, he said.
Gulmarg received 7 cms of fresh snowfall and recorded a low of minus 4.4°C against minus 5.4°C on the previous night, he said.
The temperature was 0.1°C below normal for this time of the year in the famous resort in north Kashmir’s Baramulla district, he said.
Kupwara town in north Kashmir recorded a low of 4.6°C against 3.5°C on the previous night, the official said.
Landslides have been a recurring problem along the highway this season. On February 28, the highway was blocked at Dewal near Samroli, Udhampur, due because of landslide.
Earlier in February, too, normal life in the Kashmir Valley was disrupted due to snowfall. Air traffic, road connectivity and electricity services were affected. Snowfall damaged transmission lines and poles, causing power cuts across the valley. Areas in south and central Kashmir received heavy snowfall.