Rain, snowfall impact election campaigning in Uttarakhand
Mussoorie, Feb 3
The impact of the fresh spell of snow was felt across the Garhwal and Kumaon region that put the normal life out of gear forcing the candidates from higher reaches of Garhwal to change their plans of reaching out to voters in Uttarakhand.
The political supporters of the candidates from Mussoorie, Kedarnath, Badrinath, Pithoragarh, Mussoorie and Dhanaulti assembly seats had to struggle to reach out to the voters.
Uttarakhand Chief Minister Pushkar Singh Dhami who was to address election meetings in his home segment of Khatima had to cancel his programme as bad weather prevented his helicopter from flying. He went there by road. Other leaders of both ruluing BJP and Congress could not make to their destinations due to incessant rain and snow.
The meteorological department has issued yellow alert for February 3 and 4, 2022 for most of the mountainous regions of the state.
The Uttarkashi district administration has also prepared a plan for the booths that will be impacted by spell of snow.
Devendra Patwal Uttarkashi, District Disaster and Mitigation Centre officer said, “Around 113 booths in the district have been identified to be impacted by snow.
The booths have been categorized as per the criticality factor and the equipment’s such as snow jackets etc have been acquired from ITBP and Nehru Institute of Mountaineering to facilitate smooth movement of poll parties.
Around 58 shadow booths with minimal communication, connectivity have been identified and 58 satellite phones along with police and forest wireless routers will be used for smooth communication connectivity with the district election commission office.
Similar plans will be invoked in other constituencies of the district said the officials.
According to the Uttarkashi district election office, 113 polling booths are there in three assembly segments namely Gangotri, Yamnotri and Purola.
According to the election commission, Purola Assembly seat has the highest number of around 67 booths that are without adequate communication and road connectivity. In Yamunotri Assembly, there are 19 booths and 27 booths in Gangotri Assembly which are snowbound.
At Mussoorie, more than 20 booths have been identified and adequate arrangements have been made to ensure the convenience of each voter, said SDM and returning officer Mussoorie Naresh Durgapal.
The services of mules, horses will be taken and arrangements of firewood will also be done to keep the poll parties warm and wireless service of the Police and forest department will be used to maintain smooth communication in the shadow booths in several constituencies.
Meanwhile, Mussoorie, Dhanaulti and its surrounding areas experienced a fresh spell of snow, much to the delight of the local business community and tourists alike on Thursday.
Rajat Agarwal the president of the Mussoorie trader association said that so far the snow had eluded the market area in Mussoorie but with the fresh spell of snow the inflow of tourists will increase benefiting the trading community.
He requested the administration to clear the snow from the roads to avoid any traffic am conditons. Tourists were elated to see the hill town of Mussoorie donning the white mantle. The PWD department was deployed to clear the snow using JCB machines while the police controlled the traffic movement. The tourists were stopped from going towards Dhanaulti after 5 pm. Heavy snow was reported from Pithoragarh, Gangotri, Yamnotri, Dhanaulti and the higher regions of Chakrata on Thursday. The slippery conditions due to snow led to traffic congestion at mall road in Mussoorie.