Heavy Rains in HImachal Pradesh – Road caves in at Shimla Town

The Shimla-Kalka national highway caved in near Tutikandi in Shimla following severe hailstorm and squall today. The work on a ropeway was in progress at the site. The traffic was diverted to the old bus stand. Shimla DC Rohan Chand Thakur, who visited the site, said buses and other vehicles bound to the ISBT had been diverted to the old bus stand. National Highway executive engineer had been asked to take immediate steps to check the hill sliding, he added.The squall reduced the visibility here to a few metres and vehicles were forced to ply at a snail’s pace with headlights on. The Hindustan-Tibet National Highway was closed due to landslides and snow from Pangi Nallah to Shipkila.Chief Secretary VC Pharka said rain and storm claimed four lives while 15 cattle perished in lightning and 35 kutcha houses and five cowsheds were damaged in the past 48 hours. He said unprecedented  heavy rain along with hails had been occurred in all districts and directed the PWD, IPH and electricity board to start the restoration works on a war-footing.  Chitkul and Kalpa in Kinnaur district received 25 cm and 16 cm of snow while Kalpa also received 70 mm rain till this evening, breaking the record of 2002.  Kalpa was the coldest in the region with the maximum and minimum temperatures at 4.6 degree and zero degree while Shimla, Manali and Dharamsala recorded a high of 21.1 degree, 17.6 degree and 24.6 degree C. Shimla received 55.7 mm rain while Manali had 52 mm rain.The local MeT office has predicted rain or snow in mid and higher hills  and thunder showers at many places in lower hills over next two days.

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