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Windstorm displaces sacrificial animal sellers

Windstorm displaces sacrificial animal sellers

RAWALPINDI: Heavy rain and gusty winds that lashed the twin cities of Rawalpindi and Islamabad brought a pleasant change to the humid weather on Sunday night.

However, the windstorm caused problems for air travellers as many flights could not depart on time. Besides, the rain created puddles in the temporary markets and sale points set up for sacrificial animals.

The meteorological department recorded a 120km per hour wind at 6:45pm at Chaklala and 65km per hour in Islamabad. A 13 millimetre rain was recorded at Chaklala, 2mm at Shamsabad in Rawalpindi, 9mm at Saidpur, 2mm at Golra, 15mm at Bokra and 3mm at Zero Point.

An official of the Met Office told Dawn that a new weather system bringing rains had entered the northern part of the country. It would bring more rains in the coming two to three days.

The official said the weather would be normal after the Eid holidays. He also predicted gusty winds in different parts of the twin cities in the next two to three days.

The winds uprooted tents pitched by the sacrificial animal sellers in different markets and sale points. The animal sellers had to find safe places to save their animals from being injured.

“The sudden change in the weather forced us to find a safer place to keep the animals at night. Animals cannot bear a cold or hot weather,” said Mohammad Bashir, a cattle seller at Bagh Sardaran.

He said with the sudden change in the weather most of the sellers wanted to sell their animals as soon as possible.

Mohammad Abdullah, an animal seller at Banni Chowk, said most of the sellers had come to the twin cities from different parts of the country and had no proper place to keep their animals in a bad weather.

“I was demanding Rs100,000 for the bull but sold it at Rs85,000 as there was no place to spend the night in the rain,” he said.

On the other hand, the gusty winds disturbed the flight schedule at the Benazir Bhutto International Airport.

“PK-309 to Karachi was scheduled to depart at 6pm but the flight left at 7:30pm; PK-655 to Lahore, which was scheduled to take off at 6pm, was delayed for four hours. Air Blue 205 to Lahore was delayed for three hours, Karachi-bound PK-319 was scheduled to leave at 10pm but it was delayed for an hour and a flight for Bahawalpur was delayed for four hours,” said an airport official.

“The gusty winds disturbed the flights but the rain did not create any problem for the operations.”

He said the arrival of flights remained undisturbed.

Published in Dawn, September 12th, 2016

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