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Kashmir receives fresh snowfall, no flights operate from Srinagar
Monday, January 16, 2012 – 15:15SRINAGAR: Kashmir Valley received fresh snowfall on Sunday throwing life out of gear for the second time since January 5 and disconnecting it from the rest of the world as both surface and aerial transport remained suspended. Weatherman had predicted fresh snowfall on January 15 and 16. Summer capital Srinagar received 9 inches till this report was filed and the snowfall was going on unabated in all other parts of Kashmir Valley.
Fresh snowfall has resulted in complete closure of Srinagar-Jammu National Highway. Crises management of the state government has been geared up to ensure availability of essentials and essential services in the snow-clad valley. Meanwhile, Divisional Commissioner’s office Kashmir, has advised people not to travel on 300-km Srinagar-Jammu Highway on January 15 and 16. The Inspector General of Police Kashmir zone— S M Sahai— on Sunday said that they have put their men on alert across the Kashmir Valley and have directed them to assist local administration in snow clearance operations.
“We have kept our men available for the local administration in all the districts and we will be taking up the snow clearance operations voluntarily. I am monitoring the situation personally.” Sahai said. No flights operated from Srinagar Airport on Sunday, an official spokesman said. He said the snow clearance machines were deployed by Mechanical Engineering Department for clearance at Srinagar International Airport since 4am and Beacon authorities also deployed their machines for clearance of apron and runway since 1am, but due to poor visibility no flight operated.
Meanwhile, Divisional Commissioner Kashmir, Dr Asgar Hassan Samoon visited Lal Ded Hospital, SMHS, Bone & Joints Hospital and JLNM Hospital Rainawari on Sunday to assess the situation due to snowfall. “Samoon interacted with the patients and enquired about the availability of medicines and adequate heating arrangements. He inspected the boiler rooms in the hospitals and asked Principal Govt Medical College, Srinagar, Dr. Professor Qazi Masood to ensure uninterrupted heating arrangements at the Associated hospitals. He also visited Jamia Masjid at Shehr-e-Khaas and interacted with the locals,” the OSD in Div Com’s office Amir Ali said in a statement. Dr Samoon directed all Deputy Commissioners to conduct extensive tour of their districts and ensure speedy clearance of snow from main roads and other roads. He also directed SMC officials to ensure manual clearance of snow from lanes and by lanes, as soon as the weather improves.
Authorities on Sunday issued avalanche warning for higher reaches of Khilanmarg, Uri, Chowkibal, Tangdar, Keran, Macchil and Gurez sectors in North Kashmir. “People living in these snow bound areas above the height of 7500 feet have been are advised not to venture in avalanche prone areas during the next 24 hours,” the Coordinator of Disaster Management Kashmir said in a statement. They have also been advised to keep cleaning the snow from the roof tops of their houses to avoid any causality due to roof collapse.
The Divisional administration on Sunday said that despite heavy snowfall and closure of Srinagar-Jammu Highway for vehicular traffic, 15 bulk tankers of LPG arrived at HPCL Plant, Pampore on Friday and 80 truckloads are on way to Srinagar. The present stock position of LPG is around 30,000 cylinders. Meanwhile, in view of the road closure, Divisional Commissioner Kashmir has ordered rationing of LPG and directed the Oil companies to fill only 5 Kgs in the domestic cylinders, so that more people can be accommodated, till the Highway reopens. The rate of 5 Kg LPG has been fixed at Rs 154 per cylinder by the CAPD Department.
Meanwhile University of Kashmir postponed all the undergraduate and professional examinations, which were scheduled to be held on January 16 and 17, a KU spokesman said in a statement. He said the fresh dates for these examinations will be notified separately. However, the examinations of B Ed, B P Ed and Fazila will be held as per the schedule already notified.
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