Srinagar: Fresh snowfall in mountains and the season’s first in the plains of Jammu and Kashmir on Friday broke the month-long dry spell in the Valley.
A pristine white blanket of snow has covered the ground in Gulmarg, Pahalgam and Sonmarg hill stations bringing cheer to dozens of tourists who have come here to celebrate the new year eve.
Long Pine and Cedrus trees in the mountains now wear a picture postcard look as their snow laden branches droop towards the ground in majestic splendour.
Highways like the Mughal Road, Srinagar-Leh highway, Gurez road and other such roads passing through mountain passes are closed.
Srinagar-Jammu highway, however, remains open for vehicular traffic despite inclement weather.
There have been dozens of fire incidents across the Valley recently due to the continuing dry spell.
The dry spell has now broken. Perennial water resources like springs, streams, lakes and wells were running at their lowest ebb as people feared the possibility of water scarcity.
Snow in the higher reaches will now replenish the perennial water reservoirs that sustain rivers, lakes, streams, wells and springs during the summer months.
Children wearing warm clothes were seen playing with fresh snow in the streets while some were trying to build snowmen gathering whatever little snow had fallen in the plains during the night.
Authorities reacted promptly to the exigencies created by the fresh snowfall. Police rescued 52 stranded tourists in central Budgam district.
Emergency control rooms and helplines have been set up in every district of the Valley while officials have been directed to remain present 24X7 to attend to emergencies.
Weather office has forecast dry weather till January 5.