Hailstorm affects J&K orchardists, vegetable growers

Thunder accompanied by hailstorm occurred at isolated places in Jammu and Kashmir on Saturday as farmers and orchardists continued to wail and weep watching their fruit and vegetable crops getting damaged, officials said on Sunday.

Hailstorm destroyed vegetable and fruit buds in north Kashmir’s Sopore and its adjoining areas on Saturday as the meteorological (MeT) department said same weather is likely to continue during the next 24 hours.

“Light rain with thunderstorm is expected to occur in J&K during the next 24 hours”, an official of the MeT department said.

Frightening hailstorm has been occurring in Kashmir during the last 5 days with specific areas being damaged on each day.

Hailstorm first occurred in south Kashmir Kulgam area and then spread to north and centre of the Valley in a cyclic manner, Kupwara, Baramulla, Srinagar, Budgam and Sopore.

Orchardists in some of the worst hit areas believe that their almond, cherry and apple crop has suffered irreparable damage due to these cyclic hailstorms.

Srinagar had 11.7, Pahalgam 6.4 and Gulmarg 3.4 degrees Celsius as the minimum temperature on Sunday.

Leh town of Ladakh had 2.0, Kargil 5.0 and Drass 2.4 as the night’s lowest temperature.

Jammu city had 22.0, Katra 19.8, Batote 13.4, Banihal 10.6 and Bhaderwah 9.7 as the minimum temperature.