Temperatures dip across Kashmir Valley; Leh coldest

Srinagar: Leh in Ladakh region of Jammu and Kashmir experienced the coldest night of the season as the mercury there settled about eight degrees below the freezing point, even as the Srinagar-Leh Highway continued to remain closed for traffic.
Leh recorded the minimum temperature of minus 7.9 degrees Celsius last night further down from minus 6.4 degrees Celsius the previous night, an official of the Meteorological Department here said.
He said it was the lowest night temperature of the season there. The nearby Kargil town recorded a low of minus 5.8 degrees Celsius, compared to minus 6 degrees Celsius the previous night.
The twin resorts of Pahalgam and Gulmarg were the other places in Kashmir division where the mercury settled below freezing point.
Pahalgam, which serves as one of the base camps for the annual Amarnath Yatra, recorded the minimum of 0.5 degree Celsius, while the mercury at the famous ski-resort of Gulmarg settled at a low of minus 4.6 degrees Celsius, the official said.
Srinagar the summer capital of the state – recorded the minimum temperature of 2.9 degrees Celsius.
He said Qazigund and Kokernag towns in south Kashmir registered the minimum of 2.2 degrees Celsius and 0.4 degree Celsius respectively, while the north Kashmir town of Kupwara recorded a low of 0.8 degree Celsius.
The Meteorological Department has forecast cloudy sky with light rainfall at few places in the valley over the next 24 hours.
Meanwhile, the Srinagar-Leh Highway remained closed for traffic as the road was rendered slippery due to snowfall yesterday, a Traffic Control Room official said.
He said the decision to allow traffic would be taken after assessing its condition once the snow clearance work is completed.