With 'Chillai Kalan' (big cold) phase still going on in Jammu and Kashmir, the Valley witnessed fresh snowfall in its upper reaches even as rains lashed the plains on Monday. The MeT office has predicted more rainfall and snow over the state till Tuesday. Traffic on the Jammu-Kashmir highway, which is the only all-weather road linking Kashmir with the rest of India, was suspended. The Jawahar Tunnel – gateway to Kashmir – along the 270-km highway received nearly two feet of snow since Sunday evening, forcing authorities to close the arterial road for traffic. The opening of the highway for traffic looks bleak even on Tuesday with more snowfall predicted.
The intense cold wave phase in likely to last till 31 January. This 40-day harshest period of winter is followed by a 20-day-long 'Chillai Khurd' (small cold) and a 10-day-long 'Chillai Bachha' (baby cold) duration.
While the minimum temperature in Srinagar was minus 0.3 degree Celsius on Sunday night, Qazigund, gateway town to the valley in south Kashmir, recorded a low of 0.6 degree Celsius. In Kupwara, the mercury settled at a low of minus 0.6 degree Celsius. Pahalgam, the tourist resort, recorded a biting low of 0.2 degree Celsius.
Meanwhile, Kargil, which registered a low of minus 14.0 degree Celsius, was the coldest place in the state. It was, in fact, colder than Drass which had recorded a temperature of minus 14.0 degree Celsius. The high altitude areas are experiencing intermittent snowfall – sixth spell during this month. Karta, which is the base camp for pilgrims visiting the Vaishno Devi shrine, recorded a low of 10 degrees Celsius.
The minimum temperature across Jammu had risen by several degrees in the past few days due to prevailing weather conditions. The minimum temperature recorded in Jammu was 11.9 degrees Celsius, 4.9 degrees above normal during this part of the season.
With inputs from PTI
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Updated Date: Jan 21, 2019 14:24:08 IST