Weather to turn ‘inclement’ from Tuesday evening; traffic from Jammu towards Srinagar today
Srinagar: A day after Srinagar recorded the coldest night in the past three decades, people in Kashmir valley awoke on Monday to the sight of a fresh blanket of snow. The light snowfall that began during the night considerably increased minimum temperatures in most parts of the valley.
Weather officials said that Srinagar received snowfall of about 0.4 inches while Pahalgam recorded nearly one inch, Gulmarg about 0.5 inches, and Kupwara over one inch. Interestingly, there was no snowfall in Qazigund.
Earlier, the meteorological department had predicted a four-day wet spell across Kashmir valley from 31st January. The department had said that there was the possibility of light snowfall in the higher reaches and some plains areas on 31st January and 1st February, while on 2nd and 3rd Feb light snowfall was likely to occur across Kashmir valley including in the plains.
Weather officials on Monday said that the weather was likely to deteriorate across Kashmir from Tuesday evening, which will eventually result in the occurrence of snowfall across in the entire valley.
“As predicted earlier, upper reaches and few plains received very light snowfall today. On Tuesday and Wednesday, snowfall is likely to occur across all parts of Kashmir valley. The weather will start turning inclement from Tuesday evening, and remain same till Wednesday,” Dr Mukhtar Ahmad, Deputy Director of the Meteorological Department in J&K, told Kashmir Reader.
Due to the light snowfall, minimum temperatures witnessed an increase but continued to remain below the freezing point.
Srinagar city recorded a low of minus 3.1 degree Celsius, more than five degrees higher than the minus 8.8 degree Celsius recorded the previous night. Qazigund recorded minus 7.6 degree Celsius, up from minus 10.2 degree Celsius on the earlier night. Its neighbouring Kokernag recorded minus 9.5 degree Celsius, against minus 12.4 degree Celsius a night before.
The mercury in Gulmarg settled at a low of minus 8.2 degree Celsius, almost the same as minus 8.0 degree Celsius on the previous night. Pahalgam recorded minus 6.1 degree Celsius, significantly up from minus 12.0 degree Celsius the previous night. Kupwara recorded minus 2.9 degree Celsius, up from minus 4.7 degree Celsius on the previous night.
The 40-day harshest winter period of Chillai-Kalaan ended on 31st of January, paving the way for another 20-day period of Chaillai-Khurd, which also is associated with intense cold and snowfall in Kashmir valley.
Traffic on the Srinagar-Jammu National highway will ply from Jammu towards Srinagar on Tuesday, the traffic department said, subject to fair weather and road conditions. Only one-way traffic will be allowed from Jammu towards Srinagar including the local traffic plying in Ramban and Banihal, the department said.
It added that no vehicle shall be allowed in the opposite direction including the ones carrying livestock and perishable commodities, while underlining that the weight bearing capacity of the installed Bailey bridge is less than 40 metric tonnes, so vehicles will have to adhere to the weight norms.
Light Motor Vehicles (LMVs) shall be allowed from 8 AM in the morning till 12 PM in the afternoon from Nagrota in Jammu towards Kashmir and subsequently from Jakheni in Udhampur from 9 AM to 1 PM. Heavy Motor Vehicles (HMVs) shall be allowed from Jakheni in Udhampur towards Jammu after the clearance of LMVs.