Kashmir’s warmest winter in 7 decades disappoints some, worries many

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SRINAGAR:  With temperatures more than 10 degrees over the normal for this time of the year, the season has turned out to be the hottest winter in Kashmir in 70 years.

Bright sun rays have replaced snowy conditions in the valley. Tuesday recorded the hottest day in February in 76 years with mercury rising to 20.6 degrees Celsius.

“Earlier we used to get a lot of rains and snow. This time it has been extremely low, the rainfall has been below normal,” said Sonam Lotus, Director Meteorological department Kashmir.

Sprouting of plants and blooming of flowers has advanced by a month due to hot weather conditions heralding an early arrival of spring. But the early bloom is not good news for farmers and horticulturists.

“We have a temperate fruit in Jammu and Kashmir which will have an early blossom. If there are showers in March, all the blossoms will shed down. Neither there will be pollination nor fruit formation,” said Reyaz Ahmad, a horticulturist.

This year Kashmir has witnessed absolutely scant snowfall with capital Srinagar virtually witnessing a snow-less winter. The change in weather has surprised not just the locals but tourists coming to witness the Kashmir 

“We are very disappointed. We thought we will find snow in Srinagar, there is snow in Gulmarg but not in Srinagar even in February,” said Jenny, a tourist from Gujarat.

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