North India, winter is here. And it is going to get even colder
"The winds have brought the chill in the air today," a meteorological department (MeT) official added.
Medium-danger avalanche warnings have been issued for parts of Himachal Pradesh and Kashmir while cold conditions prevail in northern India with dense fog covering parts of Punjab and Haryana on Thursday.
J&K is already reeling under subzero temperatures.
In Delhi, shallow foggy conditions were witnessed on Thursday morning as visibility dropped to poor levels at several places. Delhiites woke up to a chilly morning with the mercury dropping to 11.2 degrees Celsius. Office-goers experienced problems in the morning as cold winds swept the city.
The minimum temperature at Safdarjung Observatory, the reading of which is considered the official figure for the city, was 11.2 degrees Celsius, a MeT department official said. Visibility levels at many places dipped to 700m due to fog. The Palam weather station recorded a low of 10.6 degrees Celsius, Lodhi Road 11, Ridge 8.2 and Ayanagar 10.5, he said.
"The winds have brought the chill in the air today," a meteorological department (MeT) official added. The relative humidity was 95 per cent at 8.30 am, with mainly clear sky and shallow or moderate fog in the next 24 hours forecasted for Friday.
In a major respite for residents in Kashmir, authorities on Thursday opened the Srinagar-Jammu National Highway, restoring the surface link between the Valley and the rest of the country after two days.
One-way traffic has been allowed on the 300-km highway, the only all-weather road connecting the Valley to the rest of the country, officials in Srinagar said. The road was closed due to snowfall and landslides at several places, shooting stones at Panthyal and accumulation of snow at the Qazigund-Jawahar and Banihal-Jawahar tunnel sectors.
Night temperature across Kashmir, including Ladakh, dipped with Pahalgam and Gulmarg registering their coldest nights of the season, the MeT department said. The ski resort of Gulmarg recorded minus 9.8 degrees Celsius while Pahalgam, one of the base camps for the annual Amarnath Yatra, minus 6.5 degrees Celsius.
The temperature at Leh was minus 8.5 degrees Celsius and Kargil minus 8 degrees Celsius. The MeT has forecast light rain or snowfall at isolated places in the state over the next 24 hours.
In Himachal Pradesh, biting cold wave conditions swept the hills as minimum temperatures dropped due to snowfall and rain. Keylong, Kalpa and Manali recorded temperatures below freezing point. Keylong and Bharmaur received 10 cm and 6 cm of snow respectively. Naina Devi saw 16 mm of rain, followed by 10 mm in Sarkaghat and Baldwara, and 7 mm in Baijnath, Dharamshala and Jogindernagar.