Fresh snowfall in Valley; Leh coldest at minus 13.7 degrees C

Srinagar, Jan 15: Many areas in the higher reaches of Kashmir experienced fresh snowfall today even as an overcast sky led to relief from intense cold conditions as the mercury increased across the Valley and Ladakh region. 

Meteorological (MeT) department has predicted widespread rains or snow over three days.

Fresh snowfall was recorded in Gulmarg, Pahalgam and Kupwara areas of Kashmir this morning, a MeT official here said.

He said while one centimetre of snow was recorded in Kupwara where it started to snow during the night, the twin tourist resorts of Gulmarg and Pahalgam received snowfall this morning. 

There were reports of snowfall in many other areas in the higher reaches of the Valley.

The MeT Office has forecast fairly wide spread to wide spread rains or snow with heavy falls at isolated places over three days from today.

The weather forecast has prompted authorities to put in place a mechanism to respond quickly to any exigency arising out of snowfall, with the government warning its officials that any lapse in the snow clearance would not be tolerated and responsibility would be fixed in case of any complaints. 

The warning comes in view of the severe criticism which the government faced after the authorities failed to clear most of the roads in the wake of heavy snowfall on January 6. 

Owing to overcast sky, the night temperature across the Valley and Ladakh region improved by several degrees, providing relief to the residents from the intense cold conditions.

Srinagar, which had experienced the coldest night of the season yesterday as the mercury settled at a low of minus 6.8 degrees, recorded a low of minus 2.3 degrees Celsius last night which is an increase of over four degrees, the MeT official said.