Cold wave sweeping north India leaves 2 more dead

Intense cold kept its grip on north India Monday leaving two more persons dead in UP.

Updated: Jan 10, 2011, 15:23 PM IST

New Delhi/Lucknow: Intense cold kept its
grip on north India Monday leaving two more persons dead in UP, freezing Leh town in Ladakh at minus 20.2 degrees and throwing
train traffic out of gear.

Two persons, including an 85-year-old man, died due to
cold in Uttar Pradesh`s Hardoi district yesterday, officials
in Lucknow said. Cold conditions in the state have left 83
people dead this season.

With no respite from the cold wave, all schools and
colleges in Ghaziabad district were closed till January 16.
Earlier the schools and intermediate colleges were scheduled
to open on January 10.

The cold wave intensified in Kashmir division,
including in the Ladakh region, with Leh recording a night
temperature of minus 20.2 degrees Celsius.

The mercury plunged by seven degrees in Leh town of
Ladakh region last night to settle at a minimum of minus 20.2
degrees Celsius compared to yesterday`s low of minus 13 deg C,
a MeT department official said.

He said the minimum temperature in nearby Kargil town
also dipped by 2.8 degrees last night to settle at minus 15.8
degrees Celsius.In Srinagar, the summer capital of Jammu and
Kashmir, the night temperature dipped by more than two degrees
and settled at minus 2.2 degrees Celsius. The city had
recorded minus 0.1 degrees C yesterday.

The famous hill resort of Pahalgam in south Kashmir
was the coldest place in the Valley, recording a low of minus
11.7 degrees C, which was 2.7 degrees lower than yesterday.
Gulmarg, a skiing resort in north Kashmir, recorded a
minimum temperature of minus 11 degrees C, which was 3.3
notches down from yesterday, the official said.

The national capital also continued to chill as icy
winds blew at a speed of nine km per hour and mercury fell by
a few notches.

The minimum temperature fell to 4.7 degree Celsius in
Delhi, two degrees below normal for this time, from
yesterday`s five degrees. Yesterday was the coldest day in the
past five years with the maximum sliding to 11 degrees.

Fog also threw train traffic out of gear in most parts
of Punjab and Haryana.
In Haryana, Naranaul was the coldest place with a low
of 1.2 degrees Celsius, which was four notches below normal,
the Met office said. Ludhiana had a low of 4.5 degrees
Celsius, one notch below normal whereas Ambala settled at 4.7
degrees Celsius.

The desert state of Rajasthan also continued to shiver
with Mount Abu recording a low of minus 4.2 degrees Celsius,
while Churu was coldest in the plains with the minimum
settling at 0.4 degrees Celsius.