Cold wave unabated over north India; more rain, snow predicted (Roundup)
New Delhi, Jan 14 (IANS) Cold wave conditions continued to prevail over most of north India on Saturday with weather department officials predicting more rain and snow over the region in the next 48 hours to Monday evening.
While the hill states of Jammu and Kashmir, Himachal Pradesh and Uttarakhand continued to experience bitter cold following moderate to heavy snowfall in the past week, the plains of Punjab, Haryana, Rajasthan, Uttar Pradesh and Delhi too shivered.
Nine deaths were reported from Uttar Pradesh as severe cold wave gripped north India on Saturday.
Those living and sleeping in the open were the worst affected by the cold wave conditions.
Himachal Pradesh’s Keylong and Jammu and Kashmir’s Kargil registered minus 13.9 and minus 15.6 degree Celsius, respectively, while the national capital here recorded its lowest temperature of the season at 3.2 degrees.
According to the weather office, another spell of rain and snowfall was expected both in Himachal Pradesh and Jammu and Kashmir on January 15 and 16.
With this the weatherman has predicted even harsher weather in the next few days as Siberian winds and a western disturbance were expected to bring down the temperatures further.
With the Uttar Pradesh capital registering a dip of more than seven degrees, at least nine deaths were reported from Kannauj and Kanpur rural since Friday, an official said on Saturday.
The Met Office said the mercury would dip steadily till January 19 after which the weather conditions might improve in the state. All schools up to class VIII have been shut down till Monday.
The minimum temperature in Lucknow was recorded at 0.4 degrees Celsius, making it the coldest place in the state. The regional Met office said that it was the lowest in several years.
Intense cold wave has gripped the Kashmir Valley as it passes through the 40-day period of harsh cold — ‘Chillai Kalan’ — which began on December 21 and would end on January 30.
All water bodies in the valley were either completely or partially frozen. Gulmarg and Pahalgam recorded minus 14.4 and minus 12 degree Celsius, respectively.
Similar conditions were witnessed in most parts of Himachal Pradesh as prominent tourist towns like Shimla, Narkanda, Kufri, Kalpa, Dalhousie and Manali were likely to experience light to moderate spells of snowfall in the coming days.
In Haryana, Hisar and Karnal towns recorded minimum temperatures of 1.7 and 1.8 degrees respectively, five degrees below normal.
Chandigarh recorded a high of 18.4 and a low of 4.4 degrees Celsius.
Punjab’s Amritsar city recorded a maximum temperature of 14.8 degrees Celsius on Saturday, making it a rather cold day. The minimum temperature was at 2.2 degrees Celsius.
Intense cold wave condition continued in Jammu and Kashmir on Saturday as the minimum temperature in Srinagar dipped further to minus 6.8 degrees Celsius, recording the season’s coldest night so far.
The minimum temperature was minus 17 degree Celsius in Leh, the coldest town in the state on Saturday.
The hill resort town of Manali in Himachal Pradesh experienced a biting minus 6.8 degree Celsius, a day after the state saw a long sunny day.
“There are chances of heavy snowfall at isolated places in mid and high hills from January 15 to 16,” meteorological office director Manmohan Singh told IANS.
The night temperature in Keylong, the headquarters of Lahaul and Spiti district, was minus 13.9 degrees Celsius, the coldest in the state.
Desert state Rajasthan also continued to reel under cold wave conditions on Saturday. The minimum temperature was recorded at 1.4 degrees Celsius in Alwar district, officials said.
Ganganagar, Dabok and Pilani were also among the worst-hit areas with night temperatures hovering between 4 and 4.5 degrees Celsius.
In state capital Jaipur, the minimum temperature was recorded at 5 degrees Celsius, 4 degrees below normal.
The only hill station in the state, Mount Abu was shivering at 2 degrees celsius, while Churu at 4.5 and Kota at 6.8 degrees celsius were also cold.