Vehicular traffic to Upper Shimla was suspended beyond Dhalli as Kufri received 5 cm of snowfall.
SP Omawati Jamwal said the road conditions are slippery. He said he road from Mashobra to Basantpur is open. Keylong in tribal Lahaul and Spiti district was coldest at night with the minimum temperature dropping to minus 9.2 degrees, followed by Kalpa at minus 5.2 degrees.Kufri recorded a low of minus 1.9 degree, Manali and Dalhousie minus 0.8 degrees each, Shimla 1.9 degrees and Dharamshala 4.2 degrees C.
Kothi received 15 cm of snowfall, followed by Kharapathar 7.6 cm, Kufri 5 cm and Gondala, Kalpa and Pooh 2 cm each, while rain lashed low and middle hills.
Kasauli with 20.5 mm of rainfall was wettest in the region. Jhandutta received 15 mm of rain, Sangraha 7 mm, Mehre 6.2 mm, Nagrota 5.4 mm, Hamirpur 4 mm, Arki 3.6 mm, Theog 3 mm and Karsog and Shimla received 2.1 mm rain each.
Later, around 10.20 pm, police rescued about 70 passengers of three HRTC buses and trucks that were struck near Kufri on Monday night.
Besides buses, three trucks and 10 small vehicles were also safely escorted by throwing sand on the road. The operation ended at 12.30 am.The police escorted another 15 people on Tuesday afternoon.
Shimla Deputy Commissioner Amit Kashyap said directions were issued to stop vehicular traffic beyond Dhalli, after 6 pm on Monday evening due to snow. He sought explanation as to why the vehicles were allowed on the route last evening.
The local Met office has predicted heavy rain and thundershowers in Sirmaur, Solan, Mandi and Bilaspur and rain and snow in Shimla, Kinnaur and higher reaches of Mandi and Sirmaur districts.
However, the tourism industry is expecting a heavy rush of tourists and an increase in hotel occupancy.
Source : The Tribune