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Pak shelling behind increasing number of avalanches in Kashmir, DRDO conducts study

Pakistan’s continuous ceasefire violation in snow mounted area of Kashmir valley is one of the biggest reasons of avalanches that have killed as many as 20 army men since last week.
India TV News Desk New Delhi January 30, 2017 23:56 IST
India TV News Desk

Pakistan’s continuous ceasefire violation in snow mounted area of Kashmir valley is one of the biggest reasons of avalanches that have killed as many as 20 army men since last week. 

Yesterday, Army Chief General Bipin Rawat had said that heavy shelling by Pakistani troops are triggering avalanches in places like Jammu and Kashmir, which had not reported such instances earlier. 

He cited global warming and ecological changes as other triggers of the rising number of avalanches. 

Defence Research and Development Organisation (DRDO) is conducting study in Machil, Sonamarg and Gurez sectors which are not considered as avalanche prone but have reported a number such incidents. The Army has built  bunkers in the area to facilitate the study by DRDO. 

According to Army, the vibration caused by heavy artillery shifts snow level, causing avalanches. Pakistan regularly used weapons like 82mm mortar, 120mm mortar and MMG on border outposts which are mounted by heavy snow.

There are three types of avalanches- self avalanche caused by direct sun light, caves avalanche or light avalanche which take place when snow mounted area covers soft origin of oil and get displaced, artificially triggered avalanche caused by firing or strong vibration created due to heavy fire. 

Rawat, while explaining the reasons of increase in such incidents, said, "There has been a lot of ceasefire violations and heavy weapons too are being used. Many times it affects the soil and loosens it up. When there is a heavy snowfall on such a loose soil and if there is a slope, it triggers danger of an avalanche."