Thursday, January 17, 2002, Chandigarh, India

National Capital Region--Delhi


M A I N   N E W S

8 killed in avalanches
Srinagar-Jammu road remains closed

Baramula, January 16
Four soldiers and as many porters were buried under snow following avalanches at Tangdar and Boniyar last evening.

Sources said four soldiers were buried under snow in the Tangdar sector last evening.

In a similar incident at Boniyar in Baramula district, four porters engaged by the security forces to carry goods to forward posts were buried alive.

Five feet of snow fell at both places during the past 48 hours while Baramula recorded 2 feet of snow.

Meanwhile, the Snow and Avalanche Study Establishment of the Army’s Mountain Meteorological Centre today served an avalanche warning, advising people to take adequate precautions while on the move.

A defence spokesman, quoting the centre, said 100 to 150 cm of fresh snowfall had been recorded in all observatory stations during the past few days till yesterday and high avalanche danger on the slopes of above 2,500 metre were possible in Doda, Poonch-Rajouri, Kupwara, Baramula, Anantnag, Pulwama, Sopore, Kargil, Leh-Ladakh, Udhampur and Kishtwar areas of Jammu and Kashmir.

Meanwhile, cold wave tightened its grip in the higher reaches of Himachal Pradesh with fresh snow bringing considerable fall in temperature in the region.

Shimla and its adjoining areas were lashed by hailstorm, followed by rain, last night.

Rohru in Shimla district experienced snow this morning. About 1-ft snow had accumulated in the surrounding areas of Rohru, reports said. The Shimla-Rohru road was blocked at Khadapathar.

Lahaul-Spiti and Kinnaur and Pangi valleys in Chamba district also had another spell of snow with the mercury hovering around -15°C to -22°C in these areas.

Kulu and Kangra reeled under severe cold wave following heavy snow on Rohtang Pass and the Dhauladhar ranges. The tourist resort of Manali in Kulu district also experienced mild snow. Cold wave conditions also prevailed in the lower areas of the state.

The 320-km Hindustan-Tibet National Highway which was blocked due to snow at Narkanda was opened to traffic and vehicular traffic was restored up to Rampur and Rekong Peo.

Traffic was disrupted at some places in the Chopal area of Shimla district but main highways were open.

Srinagar and its adjoining areas, meanwhile, experienced the season’s first heavy snow today even as the valley remained cut off from the rest of the country following the closure of the 300-km Srinagar-Jammu national highway for the second day.

The entire city was covered under a thick blanket of snow. Most areas in the city, particularly low-lying localities, including Natipora, Raj Bagh, Lal Chowk, Bemina, were water-logged because of faulty drainage system.

Electric supply was also affected in most areas in the city and its outskirts as poles were uprooted. UNI, PTI


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