Manali, hills near Shimla wrapped in white blanket

Shimla, Dec 31 : Himachal Pradesh's popular tourist destination Manali and hills in the vivinity of Shimla received more snowfall Tuesday, turning them even more picturesque.

As news of the snowfall flashed across the plains, tourists started arriving at Shimla and Manali and their nearby hills to celebrate the coming of the New Year.

While Shimla saw rain, nearby places like Kufri, Mashobra and Narkanda experienced moderate snowfall, according to a Met official here.

Manali has been experiencing moderate snow since Tuesday morning.

The state capital saw a minimum temperature of 2.5 degrees Celsius, while it was minus 0.6 degrees in Manali and minus 2.4 degrees in Dalhousie in Chamba district.

"The higher reaches of Lahaul and Spiti, Kinnaur, Kullu, Shimla, Sirmaur and Chamba districts have been experiencing moderate to heavy snowfall since Monday night, while mid and lower hills are experiencing rain," the official said.

Kalpa, some 250 km from here, in Kinnaur district, and Keylong in Lahaul and Spiti have also experienced snowfall.

The Met department said a Western disturbance - a storm system originating from the Mediterranean-Caspian Sea region and moving across the Afghanistan-Pakistan region - would start withdrawing Wednesday.

A government spokesperson said all the state-run buses were plying as normal and there was no report of any highways being closed due to snow.

According to the Met office, it snowed in Shimla on New Year's Eve in 1990, 1995, 2000 and 2002.

--IANS (Posted on 31-12-2013)

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