QUETTA: Continuous heavy snowfall paralysed life in several parts of northern Balochistan on Sunday, disrupting power supply, phone network and road traffic.
Quetta and many towns and cities, including Ziarat, Kan Mehtarzai, Khanozai, Pishin, Qila Abdullah, Chaman, Kalat and Nokundi, have been battered by heavy snowfall and rain.
Snow and rain started in these areas on Saturday and continued until late on Sunday night.
According to reports, the Dobani area of Qila Abdullah has received three feet of snow, blocking link roads and suspending traffic.
“A large number of people are stranded in nearby villages,” the deputy commissioner of Qila Abdullah, Munir Khan Kakar, said. The official pointed out that rescue teams, heavy machinery and bulldozers have been dispatched to the area to open blocked roads and rescue people.
He said rescue teams, along with Levies personnel, had been sent to Toba Achakzai, which lost contact with the district headquarters due to heavy snowfall.
Reports suggested that traffic at Khojak Pass was also affected as Chaman and the surrounding area had been receiving snowfall with intervals for past 24 hours.
The provincial disaster management authority (PDMA) and the staff of relevant departments were making all-out efforts to restore traffic at Khojak Pass, which links Pakistan and Afghanistan.
Officials said that Ziarat, Muslim Bagh, Kan Mehtarzai and Khanozai had received at least two feet of snow, which had blocked main roads linking Quetta and other areas. They said that efforts were underway to restore traffic.
The Met Office on Sunday predicted more rain and snowfall over the next 24 hours.
Published in Dawn, January 30th, 2023
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