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Relief at last: Mercury rises across Kashmir

Relief at last: Mercury rises across Kashmir
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Srinagar: Amid overnight cloud cover, the minimum temperatures rose considerably across Kashmir Valley with mercury crawling to above sub-zero level in Srinagar, officials said on Thursday. However, the respite from the severe cold seems short-lived as the meteorological department has forecast dry weather for the next one week with 2-3 degrees Celsius drop in the mercury from Friday.
“While light to moderate rain/snow occurred at most places of J&K during past 24 hours, significant improvement in the weather is expected from today afternoon,” Sonam Lotus, Director of the local meteorological department said.
“Mainly dry weather is expected for next one week from tomorrow (February 5 and expect minimum temp to fall by 2 to 3 degrees Celsius tomorrow,” he said.
A meteorological department official said that Srinagar witnessed 1.2-centimeter of snowfall in last 24 hours till 0830 hours Thursday while mercury settled at 0.4°C against minus previous nights minus 0.4 °C in the summer capital of J&K. It was for the first time in almost two months that Srinagar recorded temperature above sub-zero level.
The minimum temperatures have consistently remained far below normal this season. On January 31, the mercury plunged to minus 8.8°C, the coldest January night recorded in three decades.
The minimum temperature also improved in other parts of the Valley, the MeT official said.
The mercury settled at minus 3.3°C in Pahalgam against minus 3.9 °C on the previous night while the world-famous health resort received 1.6cms of snow.
Qazigund, the gateway town of J&K, recorded a low of minus 0.8°C against minus 2.8°C on the previous night and it received snowfall of 13.2cms.
Kokernag recorded a minimum of minus 5.1°C against minus 2.4 °C on the earlier night while it had 6cms of snow.
Gulmarg recorded a low of minus 6.4°C against minus 5.2°C earlier night while the world’s famous skiing resort received a good amount of fresh snowfall, the official said.
The mercury settled at minus 2.3°C in Kupwara against minus 1.2°C on the previous night while northern Kashmir district received 1.5cms during the time, the official added.
Meanwhile, air traffic to and fro Kashmir was affected for the second consecutive day on Thursday due to bad weather as most parts of the valley received snowfall overnight, officials said.
The flight operations at Srinagar airport were hampered as no flights were been able to land early morning due to bad weather, the officials said.
They said the accumulation of snow on the runway and poor visibility affected the operations.
The officials said while the runway has been cleared, the visibility was still poor for the operations to take place.
The MET department has said the weather will improve in a few hours, therefore, we expect the flight operations to start around noon, they added.
The flight operations at the airport were affected on Wednesday as well as most parts of the valley received snowfall.
As many as 14 flights were cancelled due to poor visibility. (with inputs from PTI)


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