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Freezing temps continue in Kashmir; snowfall, rain likely from Sunday

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Srinagar: There was a slight increase in minimum temperatures in most places in Kashmir, but they remained below the freezing point, meteorological department officials said on Wednesday.

The department has also forecast three days of snowfall and rain from Sunday in the region.

There was an improvement in the minimum temperatures on Tuesday night at most of places in the Kashmir Valley on the second day of Chilla-i-Kalan (big cold), the officials said.

Srinagar recorded a low of minus 1.8 degrees Celsius on Tuesday night, a degree up from the previous night.

The city had recorded a low of minus 6 degrees Celsius for two consecutive nights on Saturday and Sunday, which is the lowest of the season so far.

The resort town of Gulmarg in north Kashmir’s Baramulla district recorded a low of minus 4 degrees Celsius, a degree up from the previous night, the officials said.

Pahalgam resort in south Kashmir’s Anantnag district recorded a low of minus 5.2 degrees Celsius, they said.

The mercury in Kupwara in north Kashmir settled at minus 2.9 degrees Celsius, in Qazigund, the gateway town to the Valley, at minus 3 degrees Celsius and Kokernag recorded a low of minus 1.9 degrees Celsius, the officials said.

The meteorological office has forecast snow spell of greater intensity during December 26 evening to 28 forenoon, with main activity on December 27, they said.

The Chilla-i-Kalan, which began on Tuesday, is the 40-day harshest winter period when a cold wave grips the region and the temperature drops considerably leading to the freezing of water-bodies, including the 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 snowfall.

The ‘Chilla-i-Kalan’ will end on January 31, but the cold wave continues even after that in Kashmir with a 20-day-long ‘Chillai-Khurd’ (small cold) and a 10-day-long ‘Chilla-Bachha’ (baby cold).