Lucknow: Uttar Pradesh continued to shiver as the cold wave further intensified on Monday, a development which led to the closure of all schools up to standard 12 in the state capital.
The district administration ordered their closure after parents complained that the weather was too harsh for children to go up to their schools early in the morning.
Icy winds blowing from the neighbouring hill state of Uttarakhand worsened the situation which had already been compounded by the dense fog that has blanketed the state for the last couple of days.
People did not get respite from the fog Monday as it virtually paralysed the transport system. The Regional Met Office predicted no significant change in the coming days and said that the winter chill would continue unabated for the next fortnight.
The maximum temperature recorded in the state capital Sunday was 16.1 degrees Celsius, which was 8 degrees below normal and the minimum temperature was 4.9 degrees Celsius, which was three degrees below normal. Bijnore was the coldest place in the state with a temperature of 1.5 degrees Celsius.
Visibility in most parts of the state was between 20-50 metres. More than three dozen trains continue to run behind their schedules and the Northern Railway (NR) was contemplating the cancellation of some trains between New Delhi and Lucknow, since the route has been "literally blinded" by the fog, an official told IANS.
In a related tragic incident, four siblings suffocated to death when they lit up a clay oven inside a room to obtain some respite from the cold in Bijnore Sunday.