Srinagar:The minimum temperatures across the Valley increased marginally on Friday, even as they remained several notches below the freezing point, a Meteorological Department official said here.
Srinagar city recorded a low of minus 6.1 degrees Celsius, nearly four notches below the normal for this time of the year. The city had recorded a minimum temperature of minus 7 degrees Celsius the previous night, the official said.
The minimum temperature in Gulmarg in north Kashmir’s Baramulla district was minus 6 degrees Celsius last night, up from minus 7.8 degrees Celsius the night before.
Pahalgam tourist resort, which also serves as a base camp for the annual Amarnath Yatra in south Kashmir, recorded a low of minus 7 degrees Celsius, up from minus 9.3 degrees Celsius the night before.
Qazigund recorded a minimum temperature of 6.2 degrees Celsius, the official said.
Kupwara in north Kashmir recorded a low of minus 4.8 degrees Celsius, while Kokernag in south recorded a low of minus 6.5 degrees Celsius.
Several water bodies in the Valley have frozen due to the intense cold.
A thick layer of ice on several roads in the city and elsewhere in the Valley makes it difficult for motorists to drive in the early hours. However, the situation improves later in the day as the Valley has been witnessing unusual winter sunshine.
Kashmir is currently in the grip of ‘Chillai-Kalan’, a 40-day period of harshest winter when a cold wave grips the region and the temperature drops considerably leading to the freezing of water bodies including the famous Dal Lake here and the water supply lines.
The chances of snowfall are the maximum during this period and most areas, especially in the higher reaches, receive heavy snowfall.
While ‘Chillai-Kalan’ began on December 21 and will end on January 31, the cold wave continues even after that in Kashmir with a 20-day ‘Chillai-Khurd’ (small cold) and a 10-day ‘Chillai-Bachha’ (baby cold).