On Sunday also Badrinath Dham, Hemkund Sahib, Rudranath, the higher altitudes along with the flower valley, had snowfall. In Badrinath Dham, snow collected for about eight feet. The faith path in Dham also is completely covered with snow. Hemkund Sahib too is also covered with snow for about ten feet.
The weather changed on Sunday afternoon. It was a bright sunny day from the morning, but after two o’clock in the afternoon, it was all covered with clouds in the sky. Snowfall started in the area from four o’clock in the evening, which continued even till night.
With the snowfall, Badrinath highway has completely been covered with snow including Hanuman Chatti, thereby blocking the movement of ITBP and Army personnel in the China border area. In Mana, the last village of the country, about eight feet of snow was collected. On the Badrinath highway, huge icebergs are spread over Kanchanjanga, Radangband and Dhoodh Ganga.
Badrinath highway closed for 9 hours after falling boulder
On the Rishikesh-Badrinath National Highway near the Saknidhar, due to the boulder and debris, the road was blocked for about nine hours. To break the boulder, the Lonivi NH block had to install the machine. After about a fortnight, the route was opened for traffic at around 10 am in the morning. However, the police had diverted traffic on other routes when the road was blocked.
On Saturday night, at around 12.30, a huge rock broke down between Totaghati and Saknidhar and fell on the road. From this, heavy boulders and debris were spread in about 50 meters, which did not leave a space for walking either. To open the route, the Lonivi National Highway section, Srinagar installed the machine from both the sides of the road. After the failure to remove large stones, a stone-breaking machine was called, after which the debris could be removed after 10 o’clock in the morning.
Due to the highway shutdown, vehicles running every day, like daily vegetables, newspapers, milk, bread, etc. are unable to reach the destination. Regular bus service that runs in the morning from Rishikesh, Srinagar, and Pauri is also affected by this.
Police inspector Vinod Rana said that the vehicles were asked to stop at night itself as the road closed. Also, the vehicles going to Rishikesh were sent through Gaza-Chamba. Here, according to Lonivi’s Executive Engineer Manoj Bisht, no work was going on where the boulders fell, however, it started immediately after the route was open.
Kedarnath has more than nine and a half feet of ice
If the weather is supportive, then frozen ice in Kedarnath can melt in one month. If that is not the case, then in the upcoming travel preparations, administrations, departments, and executive bodies could be in dire problem.
There are nine and a half feet of snow in the Dham. On Sunday, the weather was pleasant all day and there was sunshine. Meanwhile, the maximum temperature was recorded at 13 degrees Celsius and minimum minus 9.9 degrees Celsius.
Since last 21 January, on the night of February 15, Kedarnath has received 6 times heavy snowfall. Currently, there is a total of about 9 to 11 feet of snow in the entire area, from the temple complex here. Between Kedarnath and Gaurikund, there are 5 to 7 feet of snow on the pedestrian route, till Rambara, which is also difficult to navigate. The glacier zone is active throughout the route. From Lincholi to Rudra Point, 6 feet above the length of 50 feet and more than 30 feet wide glacier has been spread.
Captain Soban Singh Bisht, in-charge of the Wood Stone team, the executive body present in Kedarnath, said that it is not easy to overcome the conditions of the present. All workplaces are covered with snow.
If the weather is clear, then the ice may melt in one month. Also, it can take more than 25 days to clean up the snow by increasing the number of laborers. He said that the exterior reconstruction work was stalled in Dham from the last 28 days. In the absence of electricity, the work of furnishing inside the residential buildings of the Tirtha priests is being affected.