Slight rise in city temp brings relief, air quality still 'severe'
New Delhi: In momentarily relief, residents of Delhi-NCR witnessed a slight increase in the temperature on Thursday as it was recorded at 5.8 degrees Celsius near the Safdarjung area of Delhi at 6:30 am. The maximum temperature on Thursday will be 19.5 degrees Celsius, according to the Indian Meteorological Department (IMD).
Meanwhile, the air quality was recorded in the "severe" category in several parts of Delhi.
Meanwhile, as many as 21 trains to and from Delhi were running late early morning on Thursday due to low visibility.
However, IMD said light rain is predicted on January 2. The MeT Department said Delhi was unlikely to see cold waves till January 4. After two weeks of the bone-chilling cold, people of Delhi witnessed a sunny day on January 1, though the minimum temperature still hovered around 2.4 degrees Celsius, five notches below normal.
According to data provided by the Delhi Pollution Control Committee (DPCC), the Air Quality Index (AQI) was recorded at 418 (Severe category) in Anand Vihar, 426 (Severe) in RK Puram and, 457 (Severe) in Rohini at 5 am on Thursday.
According to the government-run agency System of Air Quality and Weather Forecasting And Research (SAFAR), "Very calm conditions are persisting during stable night time with a sign of clustered emission hot spots, probably due to slow and congested traffic, leading to the accumulation of pollutants near the ground under very cool temperature."
AQI is forecasted to improve to the higher-end of the very poor category by January 3, and likely to be in the same category on January 4.
Meanwhile, facing intense spell of winters, the New Year may have brought in respite for residents of Gurugram in terms of warmer temperatures. Despite warmer temperatures, there has been a huge spike in air pollution levels in Gurugram with the emergence of smog that engulfed the city till afternoon.
The presence of smog resulted in poor visibility levels in spite of the sun coming out. Moreover the air quality in Gurugram reached severe category on Thursday with air quality index branching the 402 level mark. The only consolation in terms of data was that compared to other areas of NCR levels of air pollution were still lower.
The deterioration of air quality levels heightened the dangers of poor health among the residents who were earlier inhaling the air that was in the very poor to moderate category.
On the positive side situation may improve as the meteorological department has predicted that there may be rains in the national capital region in the weekend.