Leh town in frontier region of Ladakh, was the coldest recorded place in the state at a low of minus 15.4 degrees Celsius.

"The weather will be dry and cold over the state during the next 24 hours. There will be no large change during the next four days," the Meteorological office said.

The prediction came as a dampener to many who have planned to celebrate New Year in Gulmarg, the star attraction for tourists visiting the Valley during winter. The hill resort had experienced scant snowfall this season which had mostly remained dry and cold.

"Chillai-Kalan", which began on December 21, is the period when the chances of snowfall are maximum and most frequent. The weather remains cold during this period as the day temperature also dips drastically, freezing most of the water bodies including the famous Dal Lake.

Though "Chillai-Kalan" would end on January 31, winter continues after that. The 40-day harshest period would be followed by a 20-day long "Chillai Khurd" (small cold) and a 10-day long "Chillai Bachha" (baby cold).

The minimum temperature recorded in the summer capital Srinagar was minus 3.8 degrees Celsius against minus 4.1 degrees Celsius the previous night, the MET office said.

Srinagar recorded the coldest night of the season on December 27 when the minimum temperature dipped to minus 5.6 degrees Celsius. It was minus 4.7 degrees Celsius on Sunday.

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