The snowfall here in March was the heaviest the city witnessed, since the winter of 1983. However, meteorologists predict that the month’s worst is yet to come.
“At least 159 mm of snowfall was recorded in Srinagar from March 10 to March 12,” Incharge, Meteorological Department of Kashmir, Farooq Ahmad Khan said.
When asked whether Srinagar had experienced heavier snowfall than recorded recently, he said : “In 1983, Srinagar had experienced heavy snowfall and rains.
“At least 365 mm of snowfall and rain was recorded.” The severe snowfall this winter has claimed 17 lives. “About 2000 houses have been damaged in the state,” he said.
Khan said the prevailing Western Disturbance, which caused the heavy snowfall, has moved away from the state.
“However, another bout of extratropical storm is expected to blow in from the Mediterranean region and may lead to more snowfalls and rains,” he said.
“The state may witness harsh weather between March 14 and 18 due to the approaching Western Disturbance,” he said.
Khan said the plains may experience rainfall and light to moderate snowfall. “After March 19, the Valley will mostly have dry weather,” he said.
Many roads here and at other parts of the Valley remain waterlogged and efforts to drain the water out are on.
Meanwhile, the 296 km-long Srinagar-Jammu National Highway, the only road link connecting Kashmir with rest of the country, has been re-opened.
“The vehicles stranded on the highway are being cleared today. No traffic movement was allowed from Srinagar or Jammu,” an official of the traffic department said. He added that their first priority “is to clear the stranded vehicles”.
One-way traffic from Jammu to Srinagar will be allowed on the highway on Friday if the weather conditions improve.
The highway was closed to vehicular traffic on Tuesday after a heavy spell of snowfall.