Kashmir Reels Under Intense Cold Wave

KO Photo By Abid Bhat

Srinagar Records Season’s Coldest Night At -6 Deg Celsius

Srinagar- Cold conditions intensified in Kashmir valley as Srinagar experienced the coldest night of the season so far at minus 6.0°C on Saturday.

A meteorological department official here said that the mercury in the summer capital was down from previous night’s minus 3.8°C by minus 2.2°C and overall it was below minus 4.5°C than the normal for this time of the year, according to news reports.

Barring last year, it is for the first time in the last decade that mercury has plunged to minus 6.0°C or more before the onset of the Chillai-e-Kalan, the 40-day long chilliest part of the season, starting on December 21. In the last ten years, it has been four occasions when the mercury fell to minus 6.0°C or above in Srinagar.

On 19 December 2020, the mercury had plummeted to minus 6.6°C while as lowest in month of December was recorded on 30th day in 2019 at 6.6°C. In last ten years, the lowest was recorded 25 December 2017 when mercury plunged to minus 7.7°C. The lowest ever temperature in December was recorded on 13th of 1934 when mercury fell to minus 12.8°C.

Meanwhile, the mercury in Gulmarg in north Kashmir’s Baramulla district settled at minus 8.5°C, up by 0.1°C the previous night, the official said.

Qazigund had a low of minus 6.0°C against minus 3.2°C on the previous night, he said.

Pahalgam recorded a low of minus 8.3°C against minus 5.6°C on the previous night.

Kokernag, also in south Kashmir, recorded a low of minus 5.1°C against minus 3.5°C on the previous night, the official said.

Kupwara town in north Kashmir recorded a minimum of minus 6.1°C against minus 4.4°C on the previous night, the official said.

Jammu city saw a low of 2.3°C which is minus 6.6°C below normal, he said.

Ladakh’s Leh had a low of minus 15.3°C against last night’s minus 14.2°C while automatic Kargil station recorded minimum of minus 13.1°C. Drass in Kargil, the second coldest place in the world after Siberia, recorded a low of minus 19.7°C, the official said.

The weatherman has forecast widespread “moderate to heavy” snowfall in Jammu and Kashmir and Ladakh from December 23 to 25. “As on date, widespread moderate to heavy snowfall (at some places) is most likely during 23-25th December. We are in for a White X-Mas (Christmas ) in both J&K and Ladakh,” he said.

For the next few days, the night temperature is likely to fall further, the officials added.

Cold Wave To Persist,  MeT Modifies Earlier Forecast

Weathermen on Saturday modified earlier forecast, now predicting “no” major snowfall in Kashmir and Ladakh next week.

“Mostly dry and cold weather is likely to continue till December 22 forenoon in both J&K and Ladakh,”  the meteorological department said in a statement, adding, “There’s a modification in the early forecast of snowfall. Now, there’s no forecast of any major snowfall in both J&K and Ladakh.”

 However, he said, light to Moderate snowfall is expected at many places of J&K and at scattered places of Ladakh especially along Sonmarg-Drass, Parkachik-Padum axis during Evening of December 22 to 25.He said that due to mainly clear sky, night temperature Is most likely to fall further during next three days.

“Thereafter, due to the approaching Western Disturbance, we expect gradual fall in day temperature and slight rise in night temperature from December 21 to 26.”

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