New Delhi: Severe cold wave conditions persisted on Wednesday in most parts of north and central India with Leh town in Jammu and Kashmir freezing at minus 20 degrees Celsius.
In national capital, the lowest temperature recorded today morning was 4.4 deg C as against the 3.7 deg C –lowest this season - recorded a day earlier. Icy winds blowing across the city has added to the woes of the people.
As per reports, the present conditions are expected to continue atleast till January 7 with the fog also expected to make a return in a day or two.
Narnaul in Haryana was the coldest place in the plains at zero degree Celsius, down three notches.
Bhopal in central India is witnessing an unusually harsh cold wave conditions at 2.2 degree Celsius recorded today morning. Residents of the ‘city of lakes’ woke up to the pleasant sight of seeing a thin layer of ice covering all open surfaces.
Gangetic plane is also battling cold. The mercury dipped below three degrees Celsius, the first time in seven years in Allahabad, leaving eight people dead due to cold in the district with the trans-Ganga region accounting for five deaths. In total, more than 30 people have lost their lives in Uttar Pradesh after the onset of cold this year.
Railway traffic was also hit due to fog with certain trains like the Prayagraj Express, Sangam Express and Reeva Express running three to four hours behind schedule, railway sources said.
In Jammu and Kashmir, Leh town registered a low of minus 20 degrees Celsius, even though the minimum temperatures across the region appreciated by a couple of degrees.
Other parts of the Valley saw the night temperatures appreciating as Gulmarg skiing resort recorded a low of minus 9.2 deg C, which was 2.5 degrees higher than yesterday.
Pahalgam tourist resort in south Kashmir recorded a temperature of minus 7.7 deg C compared to yesterday’s minus 12.4 deg C.
Qazigund, the gateway town to Kashmir Valley near Jawahar tunnel, was freezing at minus 8.4 deg C while Kokernag town in Anantnag district witnessed a night temperature of minus 7.5 deg C.In Srinagar city, the minimum temperature rose by 1.1 deg C to settle at minus 4.1 deg C.
Punjab and Haryana faced the wrath of cold conditions with the minimum temperatures dropping sharply while dense fog in the two states threw normal life out of gear.
As the minimum temperatures in Haryana tumbled after settling above normal for five days, the chill also swept Hisar, which recorded a low of 2.7 deg C, down two notches.
Fog has affected movement of vehicular traffic at many places while some trains were also delayed due to bad weather conditions.
In Punjab, Ludhiana and Patiala recorded respective lows of 7 deg C and 5.2 deg C. Amritsar recorded a low of 8 deg C, five notches above normal.
In Rajasthan, biting cold conditions continued with Jaipur recording the lowest temperature of 2.1 degrees Celsius, 6 notches below normal.
The sole hill station of the desert state Mount Abu recorded a low of minus 4.4 degrees Celsius, according to MeT department.
The Rajasthan government has declared five days holiday from Tuesday to Saturday in government and private schools across the state in view of the cold conditions.
With PTI inputs