Sub-zero temperature during nights engulf Kashmir valley as the meteorological department forecast chilly nights ahead. The chill has people of the valley braving odds to go on with their routine life.
Srinagar recorded minus 3.3 degree Celsius on Tuesday night freezing taps, still water on roads. The chill forced people to start their day late in the morning.
“Even at 10 am, it is chilly and unbearable to venture out of homes. I opened my shop late,” said 56-year-old Azim Ahmad, a shopkeeper at Maharaj Bazar.
Old people prefer to stay indoors as three-month long winter vacations have already being announced by the government for all schools and colleges in the wake of cold temperature.
"We observe clear sky in the night. This dipped temperature to minus 3.3 degrees Celsius on Tuesday, the coldest night of the season so far in Srinagar," said Sonam Lotus, Srinagar-based meteorological department’s director.
Cold, dry conditions would continue for the next few days, he said. The cold temperature has made it difficult for diesel cars to function. “I had to heat up engine for hours together before starting my day,” said Amir Jan, a resident of Srinagar’s Lal Bazaar area.
Day temperature in Srinagar has also come down to 8 degree Celsius. “The day temperature might improve by Saturday and touch 11 degree Celsius,” said a Met official.
In north Kashmir’s tourist spot Gulmarg, long icicles formation at roof slopes was visible on Wednesday due to sub-zero temperature there. The tourist place recorded minus 8.3 degrees. In south Kashmir Pahalgam hill station, temperature hovered around minus seven degrees Celsius.
The lowest temperature in Kashmir was recorded at Leh town in the Ladakh region. “The minimum temperature at 13.6 degrees Celsius below the freezing point,” said the Met department.
“If the same cold, dry weather conditions to continue for another three to four days, which means the minimum temperatures would fall further," said Lotus.
In the Kargil town, the minimum temperature was recorded at minus 12.4 degrees.