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Temperature dips to sub-zero levels across Kashmir

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Srinagar: Most parts of Kashmir valley recorded sub-zero night temperatures with the skiing-resort of Gulmarg being the coldest place in Kashmir on Sunday.

Due to overnight partial cloud cover across J&K and Ladakh, night temperatures dropped further as Drass town recorded minus 17.6 degrees Celsius and Gulmarg ski resort recorded minus 7.6 degrees Celsius as minimum temperatures on Sunday.

“Weather is expected to remain mainly dry during this week and due to clear night the minimum temperatures are likely to drop further in J&K and Ladakh,” an official of the MeT department said.

He said Pahalgam tourist resort in south Kashmir recorded a low of minus 3.2 degrees Celsius, while the night temperature in Kokernag settled at minus 2.3 degrees Celsius.

Officials said the mercury in Srinagar settled at a low of 0.1 degree Celsius.

The MeT office has said the weather is likely to remain mainly dry till December 20 with the possibility of a decrease in night temperature.

Pertinently, the 40-day period of harsh winter cold known locally in Kashmir as the ‘Chillai Kalan’ starts on January 21 and will end on January 31.

All the perennial water reservoirs of J&K and Ladakh get replenished during this period by heavy snowfall. These perennial water reservoirs sustain all the rivers, streams, springs and lakes during the hot summer months.

Heavy snowfall during Chillai Kalan is regarded as the harbinger of a prosperous summer for farmers and orchard owners in Kashmir.

Meanwhile, authorities have issued a medium-danger avalanche warning for the higher reaches of Kupwara and Bandipora districts.

A low-level avalanche alert has also been issued for the upper reaches of Poonch, Ramban, Doda, Kishtwar, and Anantnag, Baramulla and Ganderbal districts of Jammu and Kashmir, and Kargil district of Ladakh, officials said.

Meanwhile, Jammu recorded 9.2 degree Celsius, Katra 9.5, Batote 1.8, Banihal 2.0 and Bhaderwah minus 1.5 degrees Celsius as minimum temperatures.

Leh town of Ladakh recorded minus 13.8, Kargil minus 12.6 and Drass minus 17.6 degrees Celsius as the night’s lowest temperatures.

Drass is the second coldest inhabited place in the world where the minimum temperature dropped to minus 60 degrees Celsius in January 1995.

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