Srinagar: Chillai-Kalan in Kashmir remained warm for the second consecutive year with the mercury being 0.9 degrees Celsius above normal.
Official data accessed by The Kashmir Monitor showed that the mercury in January stood at 3.3 degrees Celsius against the overall normal temperature of 2.4 degrees Celsius.
However, the rainfall during the month was 68 per cent, which is above normal. The data showed that Srinagar received 90.3 mm of rain during the month, which is 36.4 mm more than the normal (53.9 mm).
The average minimum temperature recorded in January is minus 1.1 degree Celsius, which is higher than that of 2021 in Chillai Kalan.
The highest maximum temperature during the 40 days was recorded on January 5 when the mercury reached 11 °C.
According to records, the lowest temperature was also recorded on the same day when the mercury dropped to minus 6.4 in Srinagar.
Earlier, the valley had also recorded the warmest Chillai Kalan in 2022 when the overall average temperature was recorded at 3.7 degrees Celsius.
In 2022, Chillai Kalan, the valley recorded 85 per cent more rainfall than normal.
The data said the valley had witnessed the harshest Chillai Kalan in 2021 when the average temperature was 1.8 degrees Celsius below normal.
During 2021, the average temperature recorded during Chillai Kalan in Srinagar was 0.6 degree Celsius. The month has received 180 percent more rainfall than normal.
The Indian Meteorological Department (IMD) predicted that winter (December to February) would be warmer than normal for northwest and northeast India.
The IMD had said that the maximum impact would be in Jammu and Kashmir where there was a “55-75 per cent” chance of warm nights.
Experts predict higher than normal temperatures in February as well.
“The temperature is again expected to be above normal in February. However, below normal or normal rainfall is likely,” said Faizan Arif, founder of popular weather channel, ‘Kashmir Weather’.
Arif linked the warm Chillai Kalan to La Nina conditions. “La Nina is prevailing since 2020. It is expected to continue till February,” he said.