Valley braces for fresh spell of rains, snowfall
Srinagar: A fresh spell of moderate rain or snow is expected at widespread places of Jammu, Kashmir and Ladakh regions with possibility of heavy snowfall in isolated places with maximum intensity and spread on 4th and 5th January and gradual decrease thereafter, a weather advisory issued by the divisional administration, Kashmir said on Tuesday.
“As per the communication received from Indian Meteorological Centre, Rambagh, Srinagar, Divisional Commissioner Kashmir Baseer Ahmad Khan issued a weather advisory according to which a spell of moderate rain or snow is expected at widespread places,” an official communiqué issued here said.
According to details, this weather system may lead to disruption of surface and air transportation like National Highway (Srinagar-Jammu, Mughal Road) etc. Furthermore, higher reaches of Kashmir, Ladakh and Hilly areas of Jammu most likely to receive moderate snowfall during 4th and 5th January with the possibility of heavy snowfall in isolated places. In addition to it, there will be a significant fall in day temperature and a slight rise in night temperature, the advisory said.
Accordingly, Deputy Commissioners of Kashmir Division including Leh and Kargil have been asked to advise people not to venture in avalanche prone areas during this period.
“The concerned Deputy Commissioners are directed to activate their control rooms and ensure that the snow clearance equipment is placed at proper places for snow clearance in respect of their districts as per the snow clearance plan,” the advisory added.
Meanwhile, 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 AmarnathYatra, 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. (with PTI inputs)