MeT Predicts Another Wet Spell In Kashmir On Weekend

KO Photo By Abid Bhat

Srinagar- The meteorological department on Wednesday predicted another wet spell in Jammu and Kashmir on weekend, even as the higher reaches of the Valley received fresh snowfall, while light rains lashed many areas in the plains dipping day temperature.

“A spell of light rain/snow is likely (60% chance) during January 22-23rd. Thereafter, mainly dry weather is expected from January 24 onwards till ending January,” an official of the meteorological department said, adding, “There is no forecast of any major snow spell till ending January.”

Meanwhile, the famous skiing resort of Gulmarg and some other places in the higher reaches of Kashmir received fresh snowfall, while light rains lashed many areas in the plains on Wednesday, even as the minimum temperature in most parts of the valley settled above the freezing point, officials said.

Gulmarg received light fresh snowfall of about 1.2 cm, the officials said.

They said there are reports of snowfall in some other areas in the higher reaches of the valley.

Most areas in the plains of the valley were lashed by rains which continued at many places when the last reports came in, the officials said.

The overcast conditions led to an increase in the minimum temperature at most places of Kashmir, they said.

The minimum temperature in Srinagar, the summer capital of Jammu and Kashmir, settled at a low of 2.7 degrees Celsius, up from the previous night's 1.1 degrees Celsius, the officials said.

Gulmarg, the famous skiing resort in Baramulla district of north Kashmir, recorded a low of minus 6 degrees Celsius, same as the previous night.

Pahalgam in south Kashmir's Anantnag district recorded a low of minus 1.9 degrees Celsius, down from the previous night's minus 0.7 degrees Celsius, they said.

The twin tourist resorts were the only place in the valley which experienced the sub-zero night temperature last night.

The officials said Qazigund recorded the minimum of 1.3 degrees Celsius, while the nearby south Kashmir town of Kokernag recorded a low of 0.2 degrees Celsius.

The minimum temperature in Kupwara in north Kashmir settled at a low of 1.2 degrees Celsius.

The MET Office has said the weather will remain partly to generally cloudy in both regions of J-K with the possibility of light rain/snow at scattered places over the next 24 hours.

A spell of light rain or snow is likely during January 22-23, but thereafter, the weather is likely to stay mainly dry till the end of the month and there is no forecast of any major rain or snow till the end of January, it said.

Kashmir valley is currently under the grip of the 40-day harshest winter period known as 'Chilla-i-Kalan' which began on December 21 last year.

'Chilla-i-Kalan' is a period when a cold wave grips the region and the temperature drops considerably leading to the freezing of water bodies including the famous Dal Lake here as well as the water supply lines in several parts of the valley.

The chances of snowfall are the most frequent and maximum during this period and most areas, especially in the higher reaches, receive heavy to very heavy snowfall.

Jammu Bound Traffic On Highway Today

Jammu-Srinagar highway, the only surface link connecting Kashmir Valley with the outside world, shall remain open for only one-way traffic on Thursday, officials said here.

“Commuters are advised not to travel on the highway without confirming the status of road from traffic control unit Jammu or Ramban or Srinagar in view of the inclement weather prediction issued by MeT department,” a traffic department official here said in a statement.

“However, tomorrow (Thursday), subject to fair weather and better road condition LMVs (Passenger) / private cars shall be allowed from Srinagar towards Jammu (strictly one way) on Jammu-Srinagar highway,” the official said. TCU Srinagar shall liaise with TCU Ramban before releasing the traffic, he said.

He said the cut off for LMVs and private cars from NAVYUG Tunnel (Qazigund side) is 0800 hours to 1200 hours “subject to change depending on the road position then.” “No vehicle shall be allowed before and after cut off timings,” he said.

Regarding HMVs and load carriers, he said, they shall be allowed from NAVYUG Tunnel (Qazigund) towards Jammu after the tail of down LMVs crosses NAVYUG Tunnel.

Meanwhile, Mughal Road, connecting Shopian with Poonch and Rajouri districts, remained closed for vehicular movement in view of snow accumulation at Peer Ki Gali.

Also, Srinagar-Sonamarg-Gumri road remained shut for vehicular movement in view of snow accumulation on Zoji la axis and has been closed till further orders. Kishtwar-Sinthan road also remained closed in view of snow accumulation, the traffic department official said.

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