Rawalpindi - Mercury level dropped considerably yesterday after the city received heavy rain, which further multiplied miseries of the low-lying areas’ residents in absence of electricity and gas.

According to the Met office, over all 56.1mm rain was recorded in Rawalpindi in seven hours. The Met office recorded 52mm rainfall at Chaklala and 30mm at Shamsabad in the city. It recorded 65mm rainfall at Saidpur, 64mm at Zero Point and 48mm at Golra in Islamabad. No emergency call was received during the heavy rain from any part of city, said Rescue 1122. The district government said the water level in Nullah Leh remained normal and there was no risk of flooding in the city. According to details, the city received heavy rain that started on Wednesday night and continued till 1pm on Thursday.

Water inundated almost all roads, including Murree Road, Pirwadhai Mor Flyover, Chandni Chowk Flyover, Moti Mehel and Committee Chowk Underpasses, Adiala Road, Peshawar Road causing traffic jam. Traffic wardens remained absent from duty from some squares where traffic got stuck. The rainwater also entered houses located in low-lying areas and damaged the households. The areas where rainwater submerged house included Nadim Colony, Gawalmandi, Javed Colony, Mohanpura , Shakrial, Sadiqabad and Dhama Morr.

The business of soup, pakoras, samosas and tea boomed in the city as huge rush of customers could be witnessed outside the shops selling their stuff.

Prices of dry fruits had seen a sharp decrease. However, the vendors and hand-pushcart owners complained that rain had slowed down their business. The public traffic remained off the roads while the drivers of rickshaws and taxis fleeced the passengers. In several areas, the WAPDA and SNGPL observed load-shedding while doubling the miseries of citizens in chilly weather. Ibrar Hussain of Dhamial told The Nation that the supply of electricity has been suspended by WAPDA soon after rain started. “The pressure of gas was also low,” he said adding no action was taken by the officials of WAPDA complaint cell despite several calls.

Meanwhile, heavy snowfall observed in Murree, which attracted a huge number of tourists to visit the tourist resort.

The hotels’ owners have jacked up rents of rooms and food prices.

CTO Shoaib Khurram Janbaz, who is in Murree to control traffic on orders of CPO Israr Ahmed Khan Abbasi, told The Nation that Murree received some 9 inches snow and a large numbers of tourists turned up here to enjoy whether. He said that the CTP had made special arrangements to control traffic flow and to facilitate the commuters by deputing some 200 traffic wardens. The CTP has also heavy machinery to remove snow from roads and pull out the stuck vehicles, he said.

On the other hand, the rainfall has brought good news for wheat farmers in the arid areas of the Potohar as experts had called the rain very timely. Maskin Hussain, a former at Gorakhpur, said that this rain was good for wheat crop. Upon contacting, Vice Chancellor (VC) Pir Meher Ali Shah-Arid Agriculture University Rawalpindi (PMAS-AAUR) Prof Dr Rai Niaz Ahmed said that the rainfall was very timely for the wheat crop in the arid areas.