Piercing cold wave conditions continued unabated in north India on Tuesday as temperatures plummeted in several places with Srinagar experiencing the coldest night of the season so far.
There was moderate fog in Delhi in the morning, with the minimum temperature settling at 5.7 degrees Celsius, two notches below the season’s average while the maximum temperature was recorded at 17.2 degrees Celsius– four notches below average.
The minimum temperature across Kashmir and Ladakh remained several degrees below the freezing point on Tuesday owing to clear sky, an official of the Meteorological Department said.
Srinagar’s minimum temperature settled at minus 4 degrees Celsius on Monday night– more than four degrees down from 0.2 degree Celsius the previous night, leading to freezing of water supply lines at several places.
The minimum temperature in Drass settled at minus 26.7 degrees Celsius compared to minus 21.6 degrees Celsius the other night, the official said.
The ski-resort of Gulmarg in north Kashmir recorded the low of minus 10.2 degrees Celsius last night down from the previous night’s minus 8.5 degrees Celsius, he said.
The night temperature at Pahalgam resort, which also serves as one of the base camps for the annual Amarnath yatra in south Kashmir, settled at a low of minus 10.4 degrees Celsius as against minus 10.8 degrees Celsius on Monday, he said.
Pahalgam, in south Kashmir’s Anantnag district, was the coldest recorded place in the valley, he added.
The official said Qazigund the gateway town to the valley – in south Kashmir recorded a low of minus 7.8 degrees Celsius, a decrease of nearly 10 degrees from Monday.
Kokernag town, also in south Kashmir, recorded a low of minus 6 degrees Celsius, while Kupwara in north registered the minimum of minus 4.5 degrees Celsius, the official said.
He said Leh town, in the Ladakh Union territory, recorded a low of minus 16.7 degrees Celsius seven degrees down from minus 9.9 degrees Celsius on the previous night.
The MeT Office has forecast mainly dry weather for the week ahead.
Kashmir is currently under the grip of ‘Chillai-Kalan’ — the 40-day harshest period of winter when the chances of snowfall are most frequent and maximum and the temperature drops considerably.
‘Chillai-Kalan’ began on December 21 and ends on January 31, but the cold wave continues even after that.
Weather was mainly dry and cold in Himachal Pradesh with dense fog observed in the plains and lower hills, whereas the temperature remained below normal in the state during the last 24 hours, the meteorological department said.
Minimum temperatures were 1 to 2 degrees Celsius below normal, whereas the maximum temperatures were 2 to 3 degrees Celsius below normal, Shimla Meteorological Centre Director Manmohan Singh said.
Low visibility was observed due to dense fog in Una and southwestern part of Kangra district, he added.
The lowest temperature in the state was recorded in Keylong at minus 12.4 degrees Celsius, he said.
Kalpa in Kinnaur district registered a low of minus 4.4 degrees Celsius, while Manali in Kullu and Kufri in Shimla district shivered at minus 2.8 and minus 1 degrees Celsius respectively, Singh added.
The minimum temperature in Shimla and Dalhousie was 2.2 and 2.7 degrees Celsius respectively, he said.
The highest temperature in the state was recorded in Bilaspur at 23 degrees Celsius, Singh added.
In Uttar Pradesh, light rains occurred at isolated places over the western part of the state while the weather remained dry over eastern parts.
According to the meteorological department, cold day conditions occurred at isolated places with severe cold at a few places in the state.
The meteorological department also said that weather is most likely to be dry with shallow to moderate fog likely at a few places over the state on Wednesday.
The department warned that cold to severe cold conditions are likely during the day at many places over the state while dense fog is very likely at few places.
State capital Lucknow recorded a minimum temperature of 7.5 degrees Celsius, while Bahraich was the coldest place in the state, with a low of 4 degrees Celsius.
The cold wave tightened its grip over Punjab and Haryana as well with the maximum and minimum temperatures hovering several notches below normal limits at many places.
Common capital Chandigarh, which remained engulfed in fog during the day, recorded a high of 13.4 degrees Celsius, eight degrees below normal limits.
Severe cold prevailed during the day in Amritsar (11 deg C), Ludhiana (11.6 deg C) and Patiala (12.4 deg C) in Punjab where the maximum temperatures were eight notches below the normal.
In Haryana, Hisar recorded a high of 12.2 deg C, nine notches below normal, while Ambala registered a maximum of 13 deg C, seven degrees below normal.
The night temperatures too hovered below normal at a few places.
Narnaul reeled at a low of 3.7 deg C.
A Met department official said most places in the two states remained engulfed in fog in the morning.
As per the weather office forecast, cold weather conditions are likely to continue in the two states over the next two days.
In Rajasthan, the maximum temperature at Pilani dropped by 11 degrees Celsius below normal limits and several other parts of the state too recorded a steep decline in the mercury.
Sriganganagar was the coldest place in the state recording 4.8 degrees Celsius.