Mercury dips after light snowfall in higher reaches of Himachal

People enjoying ice-skating at Asia’s oldest open air ice-skating rink on a cold morning at Lakkar Bazaar in Shimla on Thursday.

Keylong, Kufri among tourist destinations that get snow; Shimla registers low of -0.2°C, and Dalhousie -2.8°C

Cold wave conditions intensified in Himachal Pradesh on Friday after fresh snowfall in the higher reaches of the state sent the mercury plummeting by several degrees.

Bharmour in Chamba district got 5cm of snowfall and Kufri near Shimla got 1cm of snow, meteorological centre head Surender Paul said. Kothi in Kullu besides Keylong and Gondla received trace snowfall, too.

State capital Shimla, its suburb Sanjauli and the hill resort of Narkanda experienced snow grains.

The Dhauladhars wore a white mantle.

Traffic through Atal Tunnel restricted

Traffic towards Lahaul through Atal Tunnel at Rohtang has been restricted after a snow-storm on its North Portal on Thursday evening.

Lahaul-Spiti superintendent of police (SP) Manav Verma said only local vehicles, tourist cars and taxis with four-wheel drive are being allowed through the tunnel. The vehicles going from Lahaul towards Pangi are also allowed.

“Tourist vehicles are not allowed beyond Sissu, a hamlet near the North Portal,” he said, adding “People should avoid unnecessary travel and in case of emergency contact the district disaster control room phone number, 9459461355, and police control room number 8988092298.”

He said that Atal Tunnel will remain closed for traffic movement on Monday and Thursday from 7am to 9.30am for maintenance from December 20.

The Kullu police have restricted the movement of tourist vehicles beyond Kothi due to bad weather.

In the middle and lower hills, the weather was largely cloudy. Dharamshala received light rain in the afternoon, while the visibility dropped below 50 metres in Bilaspur.

Sub-zero temperatures across state

Keylong, the administrative headquarters of tribal Lahaul-Spiti district, was the coldest place in the state with the night temperature dipping to minus 8°Celsius.

Kalpa in Kinnaur registered a low of -4.4, state capital Shimla -0.2°C, and Dalhousie -2.8°Celsius.

Kufri was cold at -2°Celsius and Manali 0.6°Celsius. Palampur and Dharamshala recorded a low of 2°Celsius and 2.2°Celsius, respectively.

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