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Mercury down in north, fresh snowfall in J&K; fog affects traffic

Mercury down in north, fresh snowfall in J&K; fog affects traffic

New Delhi: The mercury went down a touch in most parts of north India on Wednesday due to northwesterly winds, while there was a fresh bout of snowfall in Jammu and Kashmir as fog in the plains affected rail, road and air traffic.

Icy winds from the hills brought the mercury in the national capital down as the city recorded a minimum of 7.1 degrees Celsius, two notches down from Tuesday and a notch below normal for this time of the year.

A fresh western disturbance January 28 onwards is expected to trigger "fairly widespread" rainfall in the entire northwest India and "good" snowfall in the hills, the weatherman said.

In Jammu and Kashmir, there was fresh overnight snowfall in a few areas including Srinagar, leading to an increase in the minimum temperature. Most of the higher reaches and few areas in the plains received fresh snowfall on Wednesday. Snowfall was witnessed in Gulmarg and Pahalgam tourist resorts of the valley as well.

The snowfall and the overcast conditions led to an increase in the minimum temperature in Srinagar.

A weather department official said the minimum temperature recorded in the city was minus 0.4 degree Celsius up from minus 1.2 degrees Celsius on Tuesday.

The tourist resort of Pahalgam in south Kashmir recorded a low of minus 5.2 degrees Celsius, while the ski-resort of Gulmarg in north Kashmir registered a minimum of minus 8 degrees Celsius, he said.

Gulmarg was the coldest recorded place in the Kashmir Valley.

Meanwhile, multiple landslides at several places hampered restoration work on the Jammu-Srinagar National Highway which remained closed for a second day on Wednesday, officials said.

The highway, the only all-weather road linking Kashmir with the rest of the country, was closed for traffic on Tuesday following fresh snowfall and incessant rains.

Cold to severe cold day conditions accompanied with fog occurred at a few places over wester Uttar Pradesh on Wednesday, while the eastern region of the state also witnessed a foggy morning.

The weather was dry over the state, according to the Met department.

The department said cold day to severe cold day conditions occurred at a few places over western Uttar Pradesh.

There was some respite from cold conditions in the parts of Rajasthan on Wednesday with Sikar being the coldest place in the state, a MeT official said.

Sikar recorded a minimum of five degrees Celsius, followed by Alwar at 5.2, Eranpura Road 7.4, Sriganganagar 7.6, Pilani 8.1, Churu 8.3, Banasthali 8.7, Bundi 9.4, Dabok 10.4, Kota 10.7 and Jodhpur 10.9 degrees Celsius.

Minimum temperature was recorded 10.4 degree Celsius in the state capital Jaipur.

The minimum temperatures dropped again in Punjab and Haryana as intense cold swept most parts of the two states.

Several parts of Haryana, including Rohtak, Bhiwani, Faridabad, Gurgaon, Ambala, Hisar, Karnal and Narnaul, were also enveloped by a thick blanket of fog in the morning.

After hovering close to normal for the past three days, the minimum temperatures dropped at most places.

Chandigarh recorded a low of 6.8 degrees Celsius, a meteorological department official said.

In Punjab, biting cold gripped Amritsar (4.6 degrees Celsius), Adampur (4.5 degrees), Halwara (5.8 degrees), Bathinda (4.8 degrees), Ludhiana (6.4 degrees) and Patiala (6.8 degrees).

In Haryana, Hisar reeled at a low of 4.4 degrees Celsius, while Sirsa experienced a cold night at 5 degrees.

Karnal recorded a minimum temperature of 6 degrees Celsius, while Ambala recorded 6.5 degrees and its 6.4 degrees in Bhiwani.

After recent bout of snowfall in Himachal Pradesh, tourist hotspots Dalhousie, Kufri and Manali recorded a sub-zero minimum temperature on Wednesday and light rains occurred in other parts of the state. Keylong was the coldest place in the state at minus 10.3 degrees Celsius, said Shimla Met Centre director Manmohan Singh.

Till 8.30 am, Dalhousie had received 15 cm snowfall, followed by Manali (5 cm), Kalpa and Pooh (4 cm each) and Keylong and Khadrala (3 cm each), he said.

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