The Meteorological Department has said that a wet spell was likely to begin from Friday night and there would be a “moderate spell of snowfall during Saturday and Sunday night.” The forthcoming wet spell can cause disruption in both air and surface traffic, the MeT has warned.
Director MeT, Sonam Lotus, in the latest forecast has said that as predicted earlier, “another Western Disturbance of moderate intensity is most likely to affect J&K and Kargil district of Ladakh during January 22 (night) to 24th (night) with main activity on January 23-24.”
“This will cause widespread moderate snowfall in hilly areas of Jammu, plains of Kashmir, rain in plains of Jammu and light snowfall at scattered places of Ladakh especially in Kargil district,” Lotus said. He said the intensity of snowfall will “be lesser than the previous spell as there is little or no moisture supply from Arabian Sea.” “This may lead to temporary disruption of surface and air transportation on January 23 and 24. Thereafter, weather is likely to remain mainly dry for subsequent 4 to 5 days,” Lotus said.
After a day of little respite from the low temperatures, the mercury on Monday night plummeted to minus 7 degrees in the summer capital Srinagar.
The cold wave has led to freezing of water bodies including Dal Lake and caused immense hardships due to freezing of service lines. Commuters continue to suffer due to slippery surfaces especially during the morning. The entire Valley has been reeling under the cold wave but the MeT department forecast has said that the cold wave that has continued for the last 10 days will witness some respite from Wednesday.
The ski-resort Gulmarg in Baramulla on Monday night recorded minus 6.2 degrees while Pahalgam in south Kashmir recorded minus 8.4 degrees degrees. Qazigund recorded minus 8.6 degrees, making it the coldest recorded place in the Valley. Kokernag in south Kashmir recorded minus 7.4 degrees while Kupwara in north recorded minus 5.7 degrees Celsius on Monday night.
The peak winters this year has been harsh with temperature in Srinagar recorded at a 29-year low at minus 8.4 degrees Celsius. The snowfall in the beginning of this month was severe and had hit all sorts of essential services including power and water supply.