After snowfall, temperature dip below freezing point in Himachal Pradesh
SHIMLA/MANALI: After days of snow and rain, normal life in Himachal Pradesh remained out of gear on Monday despite it being a sunny day. Power and water supply remained disrupted in most parts even as traffic on roads was restored in several areas which were cut off following heavy snowfall over the weekend.
As temperatures nose-dived further, Shimla till Monday morning witnessed 53 cm of snow in the past 24 hours. Although this year’s first snowfall on Friday brought cheer to tourists and farmers, it forced the people to live without water, power supply and network on mobile phones. Many places in Lahaul and Manali recorded minimum temperature of below minus 5 degree Celsius.
Although electricity supply remained a problem in Shimla, it has been restored in most parts of Kullu, including Manali town. However, the villages in Manali remained in darkness.
“There has been no water supply at my place from last four days. Without (mobile) network, I feel as if I’m living in a jungle, not in a state capital,” said Summer Hill resident Rakesh Thakur. “Water in pipes had turned into ice. We had to pour hot water on pipes to get some water,” Manali resident Sushil Channel said. Many people in the tourist town were seen wrapping rags around pipes and lighting them to melt the ice.
As a thick layer of ice covered roads in Manali, traffic was partially affected till afternoon. “Even now, when weather the has cleared up, the state government, district administration and Shimla Municipal Corporation have not taken adequate measures to remove snow due to which we are forced to walk 15-20km on slippery roads. The authorities have cleaned only core areas,” claimed Karam Chand Bhatia, state president of Sant Sri Ravidas Dharam Sabha.
Shimla mayor Sanjay Chauhan said the town requires around 42MLD water but they could provide only 16MLD to residents, that too just from Gumma source, in the last three-four days. “We removed 85 uprooted trees and removed snow from most roads,” he added.
“Chirgaon, Rohru, transformer has been repaired. The one in Khara Pathar, Jubbal, is getting repaired. Roads are getting cleared and water supply problem may get resolved by Wednesday,” Shimla deputy commissioner Rohan Chand Thakur added. Kullu deputy commissioner Yunus Khan said all places in district will get electricity in the next 24 hours and advised people not to venture close to snow covered secluded areas as sunny days can trigger avalanches.