Woman killed, structures damaged in north Kashmir

A woman was killed while 15 structures suffered damage following heavy snowfall across north Kashmir.

An elderly woman identified as Rahmi Begum, 71, was killed after she came under snow that fell from the roof of her house in Trehgam village of north Kashmir’s Kupwara district on Wednesday morning.

The heavy snowfall in Kupwara district since Tuesday left eight structures including two residential houses and six cowsheds completely damaged.

In Guzriyal Village, a residential house belonging to Shabir Ahmad Shah suffered a massive damage after its roof collapsed on Wednesday morning. The inmates of the family had a narrow escape in the incident. In another incident, the residential house of Muhammad Akbar Lone suffered a massive damage after a portion of the house collapsed under the weight of snow Wednesday morning. No one was injured in the incident. Six cowsheds are also reported to have suffered damage following the snowfall across Kupwara district.

Meanwhile, the three roads connecting Kupwara with Keran, Karnah and Machil remained closed for the second consecutive day on Wednesday. Officials here said that following the heavy snowfall, the roads connecting Karnah, Keran and Machil with the Kupwara district could not be restored.

The residents of several villages across Kupwara district complained that the authorities miserably failed in restoring the road connectivity between the upper villages and the Kupwara town. The affected villages include Lolab, Kralpora, Haril, Hangnikote, Sarmarg, Behnipora, Hafrada and Halmarg.

In Baramulla district, at least seven residential houses suffered massive damage following the heavy snowfall in the area. All the seven residential houses damaged were reported from the Uri area of the district.

In Lachipora village of Uri, two residential houses suffered damage after their roof collapsed under the weight of snow. Two other residential houses suffered massive damage at Mayan and Saran Salamabad villages of the area. One more residential house was damaged at Nambla Uri after its roof fell following the heavy snowfall in the area.

Following the inclement weather, the deputy commissioner Baramulla has issued directive to the officials of Gulmarg Development Authority (GDA) that all those tourists who are unable to checkout from their respective hotels following the adverse weather conditions, the stay of such tourists should be extended without any delay till the weather conditions improves.

The assistant director tourism, Dr Javed said that though they did not receive any such request from the tourists, however, the authorities of Gulmarg Development Authority (GDA) are ensuring by visiting hotels at Gulmarg and enquiring about the problem if any to the visiting tourists.

“The officials of the GDA besides hotelier association Gulmarg are working hard to ensure that no tourists face problems in the wake of adverse weather conditions. Around 110 tourists arrived here on Tuesday while 8 new tourists arrived on Wednesday. We are in touch with the tourists,” he said.

In Bandipora district of north Kashmir, the slippery roads turned the journey of ailing patients to hospital miserable following authorities’ failure to clear the roads from snow.

In Hajin area of the Bandipora district, a pregnant woman was left with no option but to walk 8 kilometres to reach a nearby hospital following huge accumulation of snow on the road. However, the hospital authorities at Sumbal said that had the patient made an emergency call, the authorities could have reached out to her.

“The patient had come to the hospital for routine checkup and is stable,” said Dr Ajaz. The authorities’ failure to restore the road connectivity multiplied the hardships of common people here. The road connecting Kosumbagh Hakabra Hajin with Safapora remained clogged with the snow on Wednesday, with the result, the locals here had to face enormous issues, especially over the health grounds.