Fresh snowfall begins in parts of Valley
Srinagar: As the Weatherman predicted fresh snowfall, it started at several places in Kashmir on Thursday evening.
The Meteorological Department has forecast a fresh spell of rain or snow from Thursday evening in Kashmir, even as the valley and Ladakh region continued to reel under intense cold conditions.
A MeT Department official said a fresh western disturbance (WD) is approaching Jammu and Kashmir under the influence of which intermittent rain and snow is likely to occur from Thursday evening till Sunday.
He said the maximum impact of this weather system would be on Saturday when there is possibility of rain and snow at widespread places.
Meanwhile, the cold condition continued in Kashmir as the mercury settled below the freezing point at most places Wednesday night.
Srinagar, the summer capital of Jammu and Kashmir, recorded the minimum temperature of minus 0.3 degrees Celsius against the previous night's low of minus 3 degrees Celsius, the official said.
He said Qazigund, the gateway town to the valley, in south Kashmir recorded a low of zero degrees Celsius, up from the previous night's minus 2.6 degrees Celsius.
The nearby Kokernag registered a low of minus one degrees Celsius Wednesday night, while the mercury in north Kashmir's Kupwara town settled at a low of minus 3.2 degrees Celsius.
Gulmarg, the ski-resort in north Kashmir, recorded a low of minus 8.5 degrees Celsius, up from minus 10 degrees Celsius on the previous night, the official said.
The tourist resort of Pahalgam which serves as one of the base camps for the annual Amarnath Yatra, recorded a low of minus 11.4 degrees Celsius Wednesday night, down six notches from minus five degrees Celsius the previous night.
The official said Leh recorded a low of minus 15 degrees Celsius Wednesday night, while the mercury in the nearby Kargil settled at a low of minus 18.2 degrees Celsius.
Kargil was 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 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).