ISLAMABAD: Cold gripped the twin cities after the rainy spell continued for the second day on Thursday. Most people stayed indoors to avoid the harsh weather and commercial centres and recreational spots in the city sported a deserted look.
According to Pakistan Meteorological Department (PMD), the rain, which started in the upper parts of the country along with snow in the hilly areas on Wednesday, was likely to continue till Friday, after which its intensity will break down. “In the coming three days most parts of the country will be gripped by severe cold,” said an official of the department.
Islamabad received 17mm of rain while Rawalpindi received 14mm on Wednesday and Thursday, according to PMD. Among other areas in the region, Abottabad received 16mm, Rawalakot 20mm and Kotli got 24mm of rain. Moreover, around six inches of snowfall was recorded in Murree and Galliat in the last 24 hours.
The first snowfall in the northern areas created trouble for the locals after various routes were blocked due to the roads being either slippery or blocked. The upper areas of Astore were cut off from the rest of the district after piles of snow blocked the road.
Heavy rain, coupled with windstorm, wreaked havoc in different towns of Azad Jammu and Kashmir (AJK) and uprooted trees and electricity poles. Lipah, Neelam Valley and Sadhan Gali in AJK received snowfall.
The rainfall, among other things, has also given a boost to the floral business in the capital. A number of people were seen bargaining over flowery pots and fancy plants in flower nurseries in sector H-8 on Thursday.
“Spring flowers make beautiful decorations and increase the romantic feeling of happy occasions, that is why we have been witnessing a large number of visitors especially after rainfall,” Mumtaz Gul, an owner of a nursery, said.
Iftikhar Mirza, a visitor said, “The different varieties of flowers keep on growing from November to March, depending upon the weather conditions and the recent rainfall has increased there chances of growth.”
Published in The Express Tribune, December 31st, 2010.