SRINAGAR: The Meteorological department on Monday forecast fairly widespread light rains and snow from Tuesday and widespread downpour in Kashmir Valley on January 4 and 5
If the forecast comes good, it will end the prevailing dry spell and give respite from bone-chilling temperatures in the Valley from last several days.
Although there was a spell of early snowfall in the valley in first and second week of November, the winter this season has been dry so far.
The dry spell has resulted in an increase in common ailments like cough, cold and other respiratory problems, especially among children and elderly.
Meanwhile, mercury plummeted again in Kashmir with Srinagar, the summer capital of the state being coldest place in Valley, colder the Pahalgam and Gulmarg.
The official said that Srinagar recorded a low of minus 6.6 degree Celsius, a day after it saw mercury to minus 2.2 degrees Celsius, nearly normal for this time of the year.
The summer capital last week saw mercury dropping to as low as minus 7.8 degree Celsius, coldest night after 7 December 1990 when low temperature settled at minus 8.8 Degree Celsius.
The all-time low recorded in the month of December in Srinagar is minus 12.8 degrees Celsius on December 13, 1934.
Kashmir is currently under the grip of ‘Chillai-Kalan’ the 40-day harshest period of winter when the chances of snowfall are most frequent and maximum and the temperature drops considerably.
‘Chillai-Kalan’ ends on January 31, but the cold wave continues even after that in Kashmir.
The 40-day period is followed by a 20-day long ‘Chillai-Khurd’ (small cold) and a 10-day long ‘Chillai-Bachha’ (baby cold).
The ski-resort of Gulmarg in north Kashmir recorded the minimum temperature of minus 5.5 degrees Celsius and it was minus 5.5 degree Celsius in Pahalgam, which serves as one of the base camps for the annual Amarnath yatra in south Kashmir.
The official said Qazigund the gateway town to the valley – in south Kashmir recorded a low of minus 4.7 degrees Celsius, while the nearby Kokernag town registered a low of minus 2.3 degrees Celsius on Sunday night.
Kupwara in north Kashmir recorded a low of minus 5.3 degrees Celsius on Sunday night, he said.
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