|Early Times Report|
Jammu, Dec 10: Despite a marginal increase in the night temperature due to overcast conditions, the mercury continued to stay below sub-zero in most parts of Jammu and Kashmir, and Ladakh on Tuesday, an official of the MeT department said. However, the foggy conditions which had forced the cancellation of all flights to and fro Srinagar airport over the past three days are likely to ease from Wednesday onwards as the twin Union territories are expected to experience fresh spell of snow and rain in the next couple of days, the official said.
Drass, the second coldest inhabited place in the world, continued to be the coldest recorded place in the region with a low of minus 19.0 degrees Celsius against the previous night's minus 21.4 degrees Celsius, he said. Leh, in Ladakh, recorded a minimum of minus 13.6, making an improvement of 1.6 notches, the official said.
The minimum temperature also slightly improved in Srinagar, which was reeling under dense fog and cold wave conditions over the past week, to settle at minus 2.4 degrees Celsius -- 1.8 degrees below normal during this part of the season, he said. Srinagar had recorded the coldest night of the season on Sunday with a low of minus four degrees Celsius, resulting in the freezing of water bodies, including the fringes of the famous Dal Lake.
"Most plains in Kashmir, including Srinagar, are currently engulfed by dense fog which is likely to persist till late afternoon. However, the relief is expected from the foggy conditions from Wednesday onwards as rain and snow is expected between December 11 and 13 in Jammu and Kashmir and Ladakh," the official said. The snowfall is expected at most places in Kashmir, higher reaches of Jammu and Zojilla and Drass in Kargil district of Ladakh, he said.
The winter capital Jammu recorded a night temperature of 8.7 degrees Celsius which was 1.3 degrees below the season's average, the official said. On Monday, the maximum temperature in the city had fallen to 16.7 degrees Celsius -- 5.8 degrees below normal. The famous ski resort of Gulmarg in north Kashmir was the coldest recorded place in the valley with a low of minus 4.0 degrees Celsius while it was minus 3.3 in Pahalgam hill resort in south Kashmir, the official said.
Katra, which serves as the base camp for the pilgrims visiting Vaishno Devi Shrine in Reasi district of Jammu region, recorded a low of 8.4 degrees Celsius, the official said, adding Bhadarwah township of Doda district was, however, the coldest recorded place in the region with a minimum of 2.0 degrees Celsius.