Srinagar, Dec 28: The free fall of mercury continued in Kashmir as Srinagar, the summer capital of the state, recorded a low of minus 7.7 Degrees Celsius, the coldest night of the season so far and a notch below 7.6 degree Celsius recorded on the previous night.
Kashmir is currently under the grip of ‘Chillai-Kalan’ the 40-day harshest period of winter when the chances of snowfall are most frequent and maximum and the temperature drops considerably.
‘Chillai-Kalan’ ends on January 31, but the cold wave continues even after that in Kashmir.
The 40-day period is followed by a 20-day long ‘Chillai-Khurd’ (small cold) and a 10-day long ‘Chillai-Bachha’ (baby cold).
A Meteorological Department official said that the minimum temperature recorded in last two nights was just a degree below to what was recorded on 7 December 1990 when mercury plummeted to minus 8.8 degrees Celsius Srinagar.
The all-time low recorded in the month of December in Srinagar was minus 12.8 degrees Celsius on December 13, 1934.
The cold wave resulted in the freezing of some water bodies, including the fringes of the famous Dal Lake here, and residential water supply pipes.
The official said Qazigund the gateway town to the Valley recorded a low of minus 6.7 against last night’s minus 6.1 degrees Celsius, while the nearby Kokernag registered a low of minus 5.5 against previous night’s minus 5.4 degrees Celsius.
The night temperature in Pahalgam, also in south Kashmir, settled at a low of minus 9.5 against minus 8.3 degrees Celsius on preceding night and was the coldest place in the Valley, the official said.
The ski-resort of Gulmarg in north Kashmir recorded the minimum temperature of minus 9.3 degrees Celsius against minus 9.0 degrees Celsius on previous night, he said.
Kupwara in north Kashmir recorded a low of minus 6.3 degrees Celsius on previous night, he said