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At minus 5.5, Srinagar coldest this season

SRINAGAR: ‘Chilla-i-Kalan’, the 40-day harshest winter period, has made its presence felt in the Kashmir valley with Srinagar recording its coldest night this winter, officials said on Thursday.

The minimum temperature in Srinagar recorded on Wednesday night was minus 5.5 degrees Celsius, which is the lowest so far this season, the officials said.

The city had recorded minus 4.2 degrees Celsius the previous night.

They said Pahalgam, which serves as one of the base camps for the annual Amarnath yatra, recorded a low of minus 6.8 degrees Celsius and was the coldest recorded place in the valley.

It was also the coldest night of the season so far at the tourist resort.

The famous ski-resort of Gulmarg in north Kashmir’s Baramulla district recorded a low of minus 5.2 degrees Celsius, they said.

The mercury in Kupwara in north Kashmir settled at a low of minus 5.1 degrees Celsius, while Qazigund, the gateway town to the valley, recorded minus 4.4 degrees Celsius, and Kokernag recorded a low of minus 3.3 degrees Celsius.

The meteorological department has forecast mostly dry weather in Jammu and Kashmir till December 24.

There is possibility of rains or light snowfall in some parts of Kashmir around Christmas, it said.

The ‘Chilla-i-Kalan’ is the 40-day harshest winter period when a cold wave grips the region and the temperature drops considerably leading to freezing of water bodies, including the famous 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.

While ‘Chillai-Kalan’ begins on December 21, it will end on January 30. The cold wave continues even after that in Kashmir with a 20-day-long ‘Chillai-Khurd’ (small cold) and a 10-day-long ‘Chillai-Bachha’ (baby cold).


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