Warmer day in North India; fog in parts hampers normal life

Weather remained relatively warm in most parts of North India on Friday on the first day of the new year, even as fog hampered normal life in some areas, claiming five lives in Uttar Pradesh and affecting rail and road traffic.

New Delhi: Weather remained relatively warm in most parts of North India on Friday on the first day of the new year, even as fog hampered normal life in some areas, claiming five lives in Uttar Pradesh and affecting rail and road traffic.

Hazy conditions prevailed during early today in the national capital bringing visibility down to 300 metres with the minimum temperature dropping to 6.6 degrees Celsius, two notches down from yesterday's low of 8.2 degrees Celsius.

In UP, one woman died in Jaunpur while four persons were killed in separate road accidents in Kannauj yesterday, all mishaps reportedly occurring due to heavy fog conditions.

While mercury fell considerably in Agra overnight, it went lower in Gorakhpur also, weather officials said, adding Muzaffarnagar recorded a minimum temperature of 4.7 degrees Celsius.

The MeT report has forecast a dry weather with shallow to moderate fog at a few places in the state.

Breaking its virtual free-fall of past four days in Kashmir, mercury saw an upward rise in the region. The weather department has predicted light snowfall in the plains over two days from Monday.

In frontier Ladakh region, Leh continued in sub-zero conditions at a low of minus 13.3 degrees Celsius, up three notches from last night while the nearby town of Kargil registered minus 15.0 degrees Celsius, as compared to yesterday's low of minus 14.6 degrees Celsius.

In Srinagar, the summer capital of Jammu and Kashmir, mercury settled at a low of minus 0.7 degree Celsius against yesterday's minus 4.0 degrees Celsius, weather reports said.

Pahalgam hill resort in south Kashmir, which serves as a base camp during the annual Amarnath yatra, recorded a low of minus 2.4 degrees Celsius an increase of over four degrees from yesterday's minus 6.7 degrees Celsius.

The famous ski-resort of Gulmarg in north Kashmir, remained the coldest recorded place in the Valley with a low of minus 5.6 degrees Celsius.

Kupwara town in north Kashmir recorded a low of minus 2.0 degrees Celsius, while the minimum temperature in southern Kokernag resort settled at minus 2.6 degrees Celsius.

Kashmir, which is currently under the grip of 40-day winter period known as 'Chillai-Kalan' during which the chances of snowfall are most frequent and maximum, however ushered in the New Year on a dry note disappointing many locals and tourists who had assembled at Gulmarg in large numbers on the New Year's eve.

There are no reports of snowfall or rain from any part of the state, a MeT official said.

In Rajasthan, weather officials said the cold north- westerly winds, will most probably hit the state in the next seven days even as train services continued to get disrupted due to fog in neighbouring states of Punjab, Haryana, Uttar Pradesh, and Delhi.

Jaipur recorded a low of 10 degrees Celsius during night, while Sriganganagar and Sikar recorded the lowest temperature of 6.8 degree Celsius last night.

An official of the Northern Western Railway said eight trains of NWR were running late by 50 minutes to 5 hours 30 minutes.

The Sultanpur-Ahmedabad train was running 5 hours 30 minutes late, Howrah-Sriganganagar was delayed by 4 hours 50 minutes, New Tinsukhia-Lalgarh by 3 hours 35 minutes and Howrah-Jodhpur was late by 2 hours 25 minutes, the official said.

People in Punjab and Haryana today had some respite from the usual cold conditions prevailing in this time of the year with mercury resting at a relatively higher level.

Chandigarh, the joint capital of the two neighbouring states, recorded a minimum of 7.8 degrees Celsius.

Ambala, Hisar, Karnal and Narnaul of Haryana recorded minimum temperatures of 8.5 degrees Celsius, 5.3 degrees Celsius, 5.4 degrees Celsius and 5.3 degrees Celsius respectively.

In Punjab, Amritsar recorded minimum of 5.6 degrees Celsius, three degrees above normal while Ludhiana and Patiala had a low of 6.6 degrees Celsius and 7.2 degrees Celsius, respectively.

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