amarnath: what are showers and why are they more frequent in places like Amarnath?

On Friday, a downpour near the Amarnath shrine in Jammu and Kashmir left at least 16 people dead and more than 40 are still missing. Following the downpour, Amarnath yatra has been suspended until further notice.

According to the criterion of IMD, if there is a rain of 100 mm in one hour over a geographical region of about 20-30 km2, then the changes in its occurrence increase significantly.

A special weather advisory is issued annually by IMD, for the Yatra. On July 8, the daily forecast for this area was in “yellow alert”, which means “stay alert”. Even the evening forecast indicated “partly cloudy skies with a chance of light rain” for all routes to the Amarnath Shrine.

No accompanying warning was issued. According to data from the Automatic Weather Station (AWS) at Amarnath Cave, no rain was reported from 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Between 4:30 p.m. and 5:30 p.m., rainfall of 3 mm was reported, which increased to 28 mm between 5:30 p.m. and 6:30 p.m.

Amarnath Shrine

The sanctuary is located in Jammu and Kashmir at an altitude of 3,888m. It is located at a distance of 141 km from Srinagar. It is an important part of Hinduism. Amarnath Cave is located near the Lidder Valley. It is surrounded by glaciers, snow-capped mountains, which remain covered with snow most of the year. The annual pilgrimage varied between 20 and 60 days.

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