Jan 14, 2020, 11:05 AM
Journalist ID: 2053
News Code: 83633354
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Dozens die in Pakistan due to cold weather, heavy snowfall

Islamabad, Jan 14, IRNA -- At least 46 people have died in Pakistan due to cold weather and heavy snowfall restricting activities and ordinary life in the country.

According to local media Gilgit-Baltistan, Kashmir and Balochistan regions are in the grip of freezing cold with heavy snow causing avalanches and roads blockades bringing life to a standstill.

The local administration have imposed emergency in the areas to cope with the extreme cold winter season especially in northern Hunza region.

According to meteorologists, the strong westerly wave affecting most upper and central parts of the country is unlikely to dissipate over upper parts of the country.

The Provincial Disaster Management Authority says it can confirm at least 21 deaths in weather-related incidents across Balochistan.

Reports say large number of people also suffered injuries in snowfall- and rain-related incidents across Balochistan over the past three days.

Tons of snow was dumped on Khojak Top – the mountainous pass connecting Qila Abdullah with Chaman – snarling travel in Balochistan. The Chaman-Quetta highway was also clogged with motorists and travelers stranded out in the open in freezing temperatures.

Paramilitary Frontier Corps has been called out to help police clear the clogged roadways. Authorities have advised against unnecessary travel because the slippery, slushy mess on the roads is extremely dangerous for drivers.

The mountainous region of Kashmir is also wrapped in a blanket of winter snow – and continues to receive more.

Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa and Gilgit-Baltistan are also in the grip of cold snap.  Gilgit-Baltistan has been receiving record-breaking snow for the last 72 hours. The snow has paralyzed life in the region, with residents in northern valleys restricted to their homes.

Authorities say the ongoing snowfall is the heaviest since April 1996. Since the region is cut off from the rest of the country, local hospitals are facing shortage of medicines.

In Punjab, seven people, including three children, died and at least 13 others suffered injuries in rain-related incidents, mainly house collapse and road crashes amid poor visibility. Intermittent rain caused flooding in low-lying areas of Sialkot, Gujrat and some other cities.

Due to extreme weather flights have also been canceled in many cities of Pakistan.

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