Cold tightens grip, death toll mounts to 139

Rains coupled with snowfall aggravated cold wave conditions in parts of north India.

New Delhi: Rains coupled with snowfall on Sunday
aggravated cold wave conditions in parts of north India where
sub-zero temperatures in Kashmir Valley claimed two more
lives, pushing the country-wide death toll to 139.

In Delhi, the maximum temperature dipped three degrees
below normal at 18 deg C, while the minimum settled at 11.9
degrees, the MeT office said.

Kashmir Valley reeled under intense cold with the minimum
in Srinagar plummeting to minus 5.5 deg C, the coldest night
in the city this winter.
Picturesque tourist spot Gulmarg recorded a low of minus
16.5 deg C. Qazigund`s low dipped to minus 8.4 deg C followed
by Kokernag (minus 6.3 deg C), Pahalgam (minus six deg C) and
Kupwara (minus 5.6 deg C), the weather office said.

Two people succumbed to the freezing cold in Hiranagar of
Kathua district and Bishnah of Jammu district respectively,
officials said.

Higher reaches in Himachal Pradesh continued to experience
intermittent snowfall with day temperatures dropping across
the state following rains.

Shimla and Manali received 20 cm and 40 cm of snow
respectively while the Rohtang Pass was covered under 170 cm
of thick white blanket, the MeT office said.
In an unusual phenomenon, a few pockets in Punjab
bordering Himachal Pradesh received snow flakes, which MeT
officials attributed to "change of wind direction favoured by
low temperature".

Most of Punjab shivered under severe chill with holy town
Amritsar recording a minimum of two deg C, while Ludhiana and
Patiala, too, experienced the intense cold, recording
respective lows of 4.6 deg C and 6.2 deg C.

In Haryana, Ambala registered a low of 7.7 deg C while the
minimum at Karnal was nine degrees.


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