The minimum temperature in Kashmir stayed below freezing point on Wednesday and is expected to remain so till the next week with the weatherman forecasting the possibility of a Western Disturbance hitting the valley on February 2.

Srinagar city recorded a low of minus 2 degrees Celsius, up from minus 2.4 degrees Celsius the previous night, the officials said.

Qazigund, the gateway town to the valley, recorded a minimum of 4.4 degrees Celsius down from minus 2.8 degree Celsius the previous night, they said.

The minimum temperature at the Gulmarg skiing resort, in north Kashmir’s Baramulla district, settled at minus 12 degrees Celsius.

Pahalgam tourist resort, which also serves as a base camp for the annual Amarnath yatra in south Kashmir, recorded a low of minus 7.7 degrees Celsius marginally down from previous night’s minus 7.1 degrees Celsius.

Kupwara recorded a low of minus 2 degrees Celsius, while Kokernag in the south recorded minus 8.3 degrees Celsius.

The minimum temperatures are expected to remain below freezing point for the next week due to the possibility of a Western Disturbance on February 2.

Kashmir is currently under the grip of ‘Chillai-Kalan’ — the 40-day harshest winter period when a cold wave grips the region and the temperature drops considerably leading to the freezing of water bodies including the famous Dal Lake here.

The chances of snowfall are the most frequent and maximum during this period and most areas, especially in the higher reaches, receive heavy snowfall.

While ‘Chillai-Kalan’, which began on December 21, will end on January 31, the cold wave continues even after that in Kashmir with a 20-day-long ‘Chillai-Khurd’ (small cold) and a 10-day-long ‘Chillai-Bachha’ (baby cold).