Mercury dips in North India
New Delhi: The mercury took a dip across north India on Tuesday and rainfall lashed many areas of the region, with the weather office predicting more downpour in the next two days due to a fresh Western Disturbance.
There was dense fog in isolated areas of Punjab, northwest Rajasthan, Haryana, Chandigarh, Delhi and east Uttar Pradesh in the morning, leading to reduced visibility.
Ten people were injured when a private university bus carrying students and teachers crashed into a stationary truck in Punjab's Phagwara due to poor visibility.
In Jammu and Kashmir, nine people, including four soldiers, were killed in three avalanches since Monday night. The avalanches struck an Army post in Kupwara district's Machil sector, a village in Gagangir area of Ganderbal district and a BSF post along the LoC in Kashmir's Naugam sector.
The national capital witnessed a drop in the maximum temperatures on Tuesday due to cold winds blowing in from the hills. The city recorded a low of 10.5 degrees Celsius, three notches above the normal, and a maximum of 17.7 degrees Celsius, two degrees below the normal.
It is expected to be partly cloudy on Wednesday and moderate to dense fog is likely in the morning. The maximum and minimum temperatures will hover around 18 and 7 degrees Celsius respectively, the weather office said.
Experts said another spell of rain is likely in Delhi on January 16 and 17 due to a fresh Western Disturbance. Intense rain is likely on January 16, they added. The minimum temperatures registered a drop in Punjab and Haryana, bringing back cold weather conditions, a day after heavy rains lashed the region.
In Punjab, Amritsar (3.7 deg C), Ludhiana (5.8 deg C), Patiala (6.9 deg C), Faridkot (4.4 deg C), Adampur (6.9 deg C), Halwara (3.9 deg C), Bathinda (3.9 deg C) and Gurdaspur (7.2 deg C) recorded below-normal minimum temperatures.
Ambala (7.6 deg C), Hisar (3.5 deg C), Narnaul (3.5 deg C), Rohtak (7.2 deg C), Sirsa (4.4 deg C) and Bhiwani (5.3 deg C) in Haryana also registered below-normal lows.
Chandigarh, the common capital of both states, recorded a minimum temperature of 8.6 degrees Celsius.
In Kashmir, sub-zero temperatures persisted overnight, leading to formation of a thick layer of ice of the roads, throwing life out of gear. Flight operations were disrupted at Srinagar airport due to slippery conditions on the runway.
Dense fog across the Jammu region hit flight operations to and from the Jammu airport.
While the minimum temperature in Srinagar settled at minus 2.7 degrees Celsius, it was recorded at 5.5 degrees Celsius in Jammu city.
Officials said flight operations at Srinagar airport resumed in the afternoon.
The Pahalgam resort in south Kashmir was the coldest recorded place in the Valley at minus 9.5 degrees Celsius, followed by the Gulmarg skiing resort in north Kashmir at minus 7.6 degrees Celsius.
Snow-bound Bhaderwah in Doda district was the coldest place in Jammu region with a low of minus 0.5 degrees Celsius, followed by Batote in Ramban district at minus 0.2 degrees Celsius.
The Jammu-Srinagar National Highway remained closed for the second consecutive day due to landslides and snowfall, leaving over 3,000 vehicles stranded.
Cold wave conditions persisted in parts of Rajasthan, with Mount Abu recording a low of zero degrees Celsius. Fog cover was reported in several places.
Sriganganagar recorded a low of 4.9 deg C, followed by 5 deg C in Pilani, 6 deg C in Jaisalmer, 6.5 deg C in Ajmer, 8.2 deg C in Alwar and 8.7 deg C in Banasthali. Jaipur recorded a minimum temperature of 10.4 deg C.
The weather office forecast a gradual rise in night temperatures in West Bengal during the next three days.
On Tuesday, Darjeeling recorded the lowest temperature in the state at 4.2 degree Celsius, while Contai was the coldest in the plains at 6 degree Celsius. The minimum temperature in Kolkata settled at 12.1 degree Celsius.
The India Meteorological Department predicted cold day conditions in isolated pockets in Uttar Pradesh and Bihar on Wednesday, with the possibility of dense to very dense in areas of west Rajasthan, Bihar, south Assam, Meghalaya, Mizoram and Tripura.