Longest dry spell in 4 decades; temps dip

Excelsior Correspondent
Srinagar, Dec 30: Director Meteorological Department, Sonam Lotus, today said that the present dry spell in Kashmir is the longest since the last 35 to 40 years.
The MeT official said that there has been negligible amount of rainfall during the last five months and this is happening for the first time in last 35-40 years.
The official said that last three months have especially remained dry, apart from a spell of light rainfall and snow in some of the higher reaches on December 12. He, however, said the prevalent dry spell is expected to end next week as there is possibility of rainfall or snow from January 4 to 6.
“We expect a fairly widespread spell of rain or snow from January 4 to 6. The higher reaches may receive moderate rains and snow, while there are chances of light rainfall or snow in the plains as well,” the Director said.
In the meantime, a day after slight respite in the prevailing cold wave in Kashmir, the night temperature dipped once again in most parts of Kashmir and Ladakh.
Srinagar recorded a low of minus 4.3 degree Celsius a drop of over a degree from the previous night’s minus 3.0 degree Celsius.
The mercury went down by nearly three degrees in Leh, from the previous night’s minus 7.9 degree Celsius, to settle at a freezing minus 10.7 degree Celsius. The town was the coldest recorded place in the State.  Kargil town registered a low of minus 8.4 degree Celsius.
Pahalgam witnessed a low of minus 3.4 degree Celsius down by over a degree from minus 2.3 degree Celsius of the previous night. The night temperature at the famous ski-resort of Gulmarg in North Kashmir, settled at a low of zero degree Celsius, increasing the chances of fresh snowfall.
The North Kashmir town of Kupwara recorded low of minus 3.7 degree Celsius. The minimum temperature in Qazigund was minus 3.4 degree Celsius, while Kokernag, also in South Kashmir, recorded a low of minus 1.5 degree Celsius.
The day temperatures across Kashmir decreased today with Srinagar recording maximum day temperature of 11. 9 degree Celsius against yesterday’s 12 degree Celsius.
Qazigund  recorded 12.6 degree Celsius, Pahalgam 12.4 degree Celsius, Kokernag 12.4 degree Celsius, Kupwara 12.6 degree Celsius and Gulmarg 11.6 degree Celsius as maximum day temperature.
Jammu recorded a maximum of 22.3  degree Celsius, Katra 19.2 degree Celsius, Banihal 20 degree Celsius, Batote 15 degree Celsius and Bhaderwah 16.3 degree Celsius.