Severe cold in Punjab, Haryana; toll crosses 500-mark
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Last Updated: Saturday, January 23, 2010, 18:46
New Delhi: People across Punjab and Haryana reeled under severe cold wave conditions on Saturday while a thick blanket of fog affected normal life in many parts of north India where over 500 people have died so far this winter.

In the national capital, thick fog disrupted the schedules of 50 domestic and international flights and led to cancellation of eight trains. Over 80 trains ran hours behind schedule.

Jet Airways has suspended all its flights to and from Chandigarh till January 25 because of fog, which also affected vehicular traffic in the region.

Icy winds swept Amritsar, which braved a low of minus 0.8 degrees Celsius, five degrees below the normal, while Ludhiana and Patiala had a minimum temperature of 5.2 deg C and 5 deg C respectively.

In Haryana, Ambala chilled at 2.4 deg C, down by four notches, while the minimum at Karnal was 4 deg C, three below normal.

People in Jammu and Kashmir got some respite from the intense cold as mercury level went up by a few notches due to overnight clear skies.

Jammu recorded a low of 4.9 deg C today as against 3.6 deg C yesterday. Banihal was the coldest place in Jammu region with a low of 0.9 deg C as against 2 deg C yesterday.

In Kashmir valley, Srinagar recorded a minimum temperature of minus 1 deg C almost same as yesterday. Kargil in Ladakh region had a low of minus 8.4 deg C against minus 12.8 deg C yesterday and Leh recorded a low of minus 10.6 deg C.

In Rajasthan, Pilani was the coldest place with a minimum temperature of 4.6 deg C this morning, while Jodhpur, Jaisalmer and Jaipur recorded 9.6 deg C, 10.4 deg C and 10.5 deg C respectively.

Mild snowfall in higher reaches of Himachal Pradesh intensified cold conditions but the lower areas including Shimla enjoyed a pleasant weather in the absence of rain or snow.

Lahaul & Spiti and Pangi-Bharmour areas of Chamba received mild snowfall, while Keylong was the coldest place in the state with night temperature of minus 8.4 deg C.

Though minimum temperature rose marginally in the national capital, air operations remained disrupted at the IGI airport due to dense fog with over 50 domestic and international flights being affected.

Three morning flights were cancelled, while 32 domestic and 20 international ones were delayed by over three to four hours as runway visibility dipped to 75 metres around 3.30 am and again around 7.30 am this morning.

Rail traffic too remained affected as eight trains were cancelled and over 80 others ran hours behind schedule due to fog. A dozen other trains were rescheduled, a Northern Railway official said.

The city recorded a minimum temperature of 7.7 deg C today against 7.4 deg C yesterday.


First Published: Saturday, January 23, 2010, 18:46

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