Srinagar, Jan 27 (PTI) The cold wave intensified in Kashmir as the mercury stayed several degrees below the freezing point at all weather stations in the valley, the MET department said on Sunday.

The minimum temperature in Srinagar on Saturday night settled at minus 1.4 degrees Celsius slightly up from minus 1.8 degrees Celsius the previous night, the official said.

He said Qazigund the gateway town to the valley in south Kashmir recorded a low of minus 6.6 degree Celsius, a dip of over three degrees over the previous night’s minus 3.2 degrees Celsius.

The nearby Kokernag town registered a low of minus 6.9 degrees Celsius last night, almost same as minus 6.8 degrees Celsius the previous night, he said.

The mercury in Kupwara town in north Kashmir dipped to minus 6.5 degrees Celsius compared to previous night’s low of minus 2.6 degree Celsius, he said.

Gulmarg ski-resort in north Kashmir recorded a low of minus 12 degrees Celsius on Saturday night, a rise of two degrees over the previous night, while Pahalgam tourist resort, in south Kashmir, recorded a low of minus 13 degrees Celsius, the official said.

He said Leh, in the frontier Ladakh region, recorded a low of 15.5 degrees Celsius, a rise of one degree over previous night.

The mercury in nearby Kargil settled at a low of minus 20.7 degrees Celsius. Kargil was the coldest recorded place in Jammu and Kashmir.

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).

This is published unedited from the PTI feed.