Kashmir prepares for major snowfall, winter vacation extended

As Kashmir braces for an impending snow spell, the Meteorological Department has issued a warning indicating the likelihood of heavy snowfall and rainfall affecting Jammu and Kashmir and surrounding areas from Friday evening onwards.

The department predicts widespread moderate to heavy snowfall and rain in the region from the night of February 29th until the afternoon of March 3rd, with peak activity expected on March 2. Areas likely to be significantly affected include the Pirpanjal Range of Jammu division and the middle and higher reaches of Kashmir Division.

The anticipated weather conditions may lead to disruptions in surface and air transport, including the Jammu-Srinagar highway and other major roads in the middle and higher altitudes of J&K. The advisory urges residents in snow-bound areas to avoid venturing into avalanche-prone regions, with concerns raised about potential landslides, mudslides, and shooting stones in vulnerable areas.

In response to the forecasted snowfall, authorities have extended the winter vacation for schools in the valley by four days. Initially scheduled to reopen after a three-month break on March 1st, schools will now resume classes on March 4. This decision comes in light of the expected inclement weather conditions and the advisory issued by the Meteorological Department.

The winter vacation for students up to class 8 began on November 28th last year, while students in class 9 to 12 commenced their break on December 11th. Teachers had resumed their duties on February 21, with classwork originally slated to resume on March 1.

The Meteorological Department has cautioned that some areas, particularly the higher reaches of North Kashmir, Central & South Kashmir, and the Pir Panjal range of Jammu Division, may experience heavy to very heavy snowfall in the coming days.