Darjeeling witnesses first snowfall of the year

An area in Darjeeling covered with a white blanket of snow as the city witnessed the season's first snowfall on December 29, 2021. (IANS)

Darjeeling witnesses first snowfall of the year

Kolkata, December 29, 2021

The Tiger Hill -- a popular tourist attraction in Darjeeling -- witnessed the first snowfall of the year on Wednesday as the temperature in the northern part of West Bengal plummeted due to strong wind and sporadic drizzles.

According to the Met Office, the temperature started to slide in Dooars and Terai region from Tuesday night.

"Places such as Tiger Hill, one of the most popular places in Darjeeling to watch the sunrise, and Mt. Kanchenjunga receive snowfall. But Wednesday's snowfall was massive. The entire Tiger Hill has come under a blanket of snow," said a resident of Ghoom Jorebunglow, around 9 km from Darjeeling.

The average temperature in the northern part of the state was around 3.4 degrees Celsius which is nearly three degrees below the normal.

On Wednesday morning, there was a huge snowfall on the Tiger Hills in Darjeeling. Though there has been continuous snowfall in the neighbouring Sikkim since Sunday, this is the first snowfall in the state this season.

As usual it is expected that there would be a huge tourist flow but the recent Covid surge in the state is keeping the administration on the tenterhooks.

Tourist vehicles were stranded in many areas as Darjeeling in West Bengal and the neighbouring state of Sikkim received heavy snowfall early on Wednesday.

Meanwhile, the administration has asked the tourists to resist themselves from the high-altitude areas of Sikkim such as Lachung and Lachen until the weather improves.

The snow disrupted normal life in parts of Sikkim as electricity and mobile networks were cut off.

The army earlier rescued over 1,000 tourists stranded near the India-China border in eastern Sikkim on Sunday.

Residents said roads leading to tourist destinations such as Nathu La, Gurudongmar, Yumthang and Tsomgo lake were covered with snow and became slippery and dangerous to drive.

In Sandakphu, the highest point in West Bengal, the temperature dropped below zero degree Celsius.

IANS

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