Srinagar, Dec 26: The minimum temperature settled below freezing point in Kashmir Valley and Ladakh on Saturday.

A meteorological department official here said that Srinagar, the summer capital of J&K recorded a low of minus 1.8°C against last night’s 1.7°C.

Kashmir is presently under the grip of 40-day long harshest period of winter, known locally as ‘Chillai Kalan, which started from December 21. It is followed by a 20-day long ‘Chillai Khurd’ and a 10-day-long ‘Chilla Bachha’.

The mercury settled at minus 7.5°C against minus 6.5°C on the previous night at the world famous resort of Gulmarg in north Kashmir’s Baramulla district, the official said. It was minus 1.7°C below normal for the famous resort.

Qazigund, the gateway town of Kashmir, had a low of minus 1.2°C against 2.2°C on the previous night, he said.

Pahalgam, the famous resort in south Kashmir, recorded a low of minus 3.8°C against minus 5.1°C on previous night.

Kokernag, also in south Kashmir, recorded a low of minus 0.3°C against 1.0°C on previous night, the official said.

Kupwara town in north Kashmir recorded a minimum of minus 1.5°C against minus 0.8°C on the previous night, the official said.

Jammu, the J&K’s winter capital, saw a low of 8.8°C which is minus 0.6°C below normal for the place during this time of the year, he said.

Ladakh’s Leh had a low of minus 10.4°C against last night’s minus 10.4°C while automatic Kargil station recorded minimum of minus 9.2°C. Drass in Kargil, the second coldest place in the world after Siberia, recorded a low of minus 9.2°C, the official said.

“Weather is most likely to remain partly to generally cloudy with chances of light Snow at isolated places of Kashmir,” he said, adding, “light to moderate snowfall is expected at scattered to fairly widespread places during 26 (night) to 28th(morning).”

He however said that there is no forecast of any “heavy snowfall/rain” anywhere in J&K and Ladakh till ending Deccember.

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