LAHORE - Parts of the country including Lahore remained in the grip of cold wave yesterday with experts predicting the prevailing harsh weather conditions to persist during the next couple of days.

Cloudiness, scattered rains and snowfall over the hills helped maintaining the mercury to a low level with large scale gas load shedding and low pressure adding to the woes of cold stricken people.

Skardu remained the coldest place in the country where mercury dropped 12 degree Celsius below the freezing point. Minimum temperature in Gupis was recorded -09C, Kalam and Astore -08C, Parachinar -07C, Malamjabba and Rawalakot -06C, Kalat and Bagrote -05C. Maximum and minimum temperature in Lahore was recorded 15C and 04C respectively. Relative humidity in the evening was recorded 62 per cent.

According to the experts, westerly wave is affecting upper parts of the country and likely to persist till Wednesday (today). Meteorological department has forecast mostly cloudy weather for upper parts of the country with chances of more rain and snowfall over the hills at isolated places in Malakand, Hazara, Rawalpindi divisions, FATA, Islamabad, Kashmir and Gilgit-Baltistan.

Cold and dry weather is expected elsewhere in the country. Foggy conditions are expected in plain areas of Punjab and upper Sindh during night and morning hours.