Minimum temp rises slightly in Kashmir owing to cloudy skies
Srinagar: There was some respite from the intense cold in Kashmir Valley as the minimum temperature rose slightly owing to overcast conditions, with Srinagar recording a low of minus 4.2 degrees Celsius, an over two-notch rise from minus 6.6 degrees Celsius the previous night.
According to a meteorological department official, Qazigund in south Kashmir recorded a low of minus 3.6 degrees Celsius, while the nearby Kokernag town registered a low of minus 1.9 degrees Celsius.
Kupwara in north Kashmir recorded a low of minus 5.4 degrees Celsius on Monday night, while night temperature in Pahalgam, which serves as one of the base camps for the annual Amarnath Yatra, settled at minus 4.9 degrees Celsius, up from minus 5.5 degrees Celsius the previous night.
The official said Gulmarg in north Kashmir recorded a low of minus 4.2 degrees Celsius, nearly a degree up from the previous night's minus 5 degrees Celsius.
However, in Ladakh region the mercury went further down, with night temperature in Leh town settling at minus 14.6 degrees Celsius on Monday night, down from minus 14 degrees Celsius the previous night.
Kargil recorded a low of minus 17.3 degrees Celsius, the official said, adding Monday night was the coldest of the season so far there.
It was also the coldest recorded place in Jammu and Kashmir.
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).
However, the winter this season has been dry so far, although there was a spell of early snowfall in the valley in first and second week of November.
The prolonged dry spell has resulted in an increase in common ailments like cough, cold and other respiratory problems, especially among children and elderly.
The weatherman has predicted light rain or snowfall at scattered to fairly widespread places in the state for two days from Tuesday and widespread rains or snowfall on Friday and Saturday.