Mercury rises slightly in north India, Odisha experiences rainfall
New Delhi: The mercury rose slightly on Friday in north India, which has been experiencing a prolonged cold spell, while light to moderate rainfall affected normal life in most parts of Odisha.
It was a clear morning in Delhi with the minimum temperature settling at 7.6 degrees Celsius, normal for this time of the year.
The air quality in the city was recorded in the "very poor" category after being in the "severe" zone for the past two days.
The Air Quality Index (AQI) was 390 in the national capital at 8.43 am, according to the Central Pollution Control Board (CPCB).
The weatherman has forecast the possibility of a moderate fog on Saturday morning.
The maximum temperature is likely to hover around 23 degrees Celsius on Friday, while the minimum is likely to be around 7 degrees Celsius on Saturday.
The minimum temperature dropped in most parts of Kashmir, even as the MeT office forecast spells of wet weather over the weekend.
The minimum temperature decreased at most places in the valley as well as in the Union Territory of Ladakh.
Srinagar recorded a low of minus 3.7 degrees Celsius Friday night and the ski-resort of Gulmarg in north Kashmir registered a minimum temperature of minus 8.5 degrees Celsius.
The night temperature at Pahalgam settled at a low of minus 10 degrees Celsius, over three notches down from the minus 6.4 degrees Celsius on Thursday.
Kashmir is currently under the grip of "Chillai-Kalan" — the 40-day harshest period of winter when the chances of snowfall are most frequent and the temperatures drop considerably.
The "Chillai-Kalan" began on December 21 and ends on January 31, but the cold wave continues even after that in Kashmir. The 40-day period is followed by a 20-day "Chillai-Khurd" (small cold) and a 10-day "Chillai-Bachha" (baby cold).
Cold wave conditions persisted in Himachal Pradesh, with a number of places of tourist attraction shivering at sub-zero temperatures, the meteorological department said.
The weatherman has predicted snow and rainfall at some places in the middle, low and high hills of the state and thundershowers in the plains from January 6 to 8.
Kufri, Manali, Bhuntar, Keylong and Kalpa shivered at sub-zero temperatures.
Keylong recorded the lowest temperature in the state at minus 13 degrees Celsius.
The maximum temperatures increased by a few notches. The highest temperature was recorded at Una at 21.6 degrees Celsius.
Cold wave conditions continued in Punjab and Haryana, where Bathinda and Faridkot were the coldest places, recording a minimum temperature of 3 degrees Celsius.
Pathankot, Adampur, Halwara and Gurdaspur shivered at 3.3, 3.1, 5.2 and 6.2 degrees Celsius respectively, a Meteorological Department official said.
Amritsar, Ludhiana and Patiala braved the chill at 4.4, 7.2 and 6.2 degrees Celsius respectively, he added.
In Haryana, Ambala, Hisar and Karnal recorded their respective minimums at 6.2, 5.7 and 6.8 degrees Celsius.
Narnaul, Rohtak, Bhiwani and Sirsa experienced cold wave conditions at 5.5, 7.4, 6.7 and 6.4 degrees Celsius respectively.
Chandigarh, the joint capital of Punjab and Haryana, recorded a minimum temperature of 6.5 degrees Celsius, a notch above normal.
A thick blanket of fog enveloped several places, including Faridkot, Patiala, Bathinda, Adampur, Halwara, Hisar and Bhiwani. People in Rajasthan got some respite from cold wave conditions as the minimum and maximum temperatures rose slightly at most places in the state.
Mount Abu was the coldest place in the state with a minimum temperature of 3.5 degrees Celsius, followed by Sriganganagar (4.8), Pilani (5.7), Churu (6.3) and Bikaner (6.8 degrees Celsius).
The maximum temperature was between 16.8 and 25 degrees Celsius at most places.
Light to moderate rainfall, along with cold conditions, affected normal life in most parts of Odisha and according to an IMD forecast, similar weather conditions are likely to prevail in the state till Saturday.
Sonepur, Boudh, Khaprakhol in Bolangir and some other places recorded 3 cm of rainfall by 8.30 am. The regional meteorological department, Bhubaneswar has forecast rainfall at several places on Friday and Saturday due to the impact of a trough line.
Though the minimum temperatures increased marginally due to the cloudy weather, it will again fall by 2 to 3 degrees Celsius after the next two days, the IMD said.
Thunderstorm and lightning are likely to occur in several districts such as Bhadrak, Balasore, Cuttack, Angul, Khurda, Mayurbhanj, Kandhamal, Rayagada, Ganjam, Kalahandi and Gajapati within 24 hours, the IMD forecast said.
The highest maximum temperature of 31 degrees Celsius was recorded at Malkangiri and the lowest minimum temperature of 10 degrees Celsius was recorded at Sundergarh.