Mercury slips to as low as 2.7C in Delhi
NEW DELHI: Cold wave conditions continued in most parts of Delhi on Friday and the minimum temperature dropped to 4.4 degrees Celsius, three notches below normal, at the Safdarjung observatory, the city’s base station. Cold wave conditions are likely to continue on Saturday too.
The mercury plummeted to 2.7 degrees Celsius, the lowest minimum temperature on Friday, at Jafarpur, followed by 3.5 degrees at Aya Nagar and 3.8 at Lodhi Road, according to India Meteorological Department (IMD). The Met department said Delhiites might get relief for four days from Sunday as temperatures were likely to go up.
The maximum temperature recorded on Friday was 19.8 degrees Celsius, three degrees below normal, at Safadarjung. On Thursday, Delhi had recorded a “severe cold day” with the maximum temperature at 15.2 degrees Celsius, seven notches below normal. The maximum temperature rose on Friday due to disappearance of “uplifted fog” that gets lifted to a higher than usual elevation and partially screens out sunlight, making day conditions colder, Met officials said.
Kuldeep Srivastava, scientist at IMD and head of Regional weather Forecasting Centre, said, “The minimum temperature dipped due to cold winds coming from the snow-capped hilly region. Cold wave conditions are forecast for Saturday at a few places during morning hours. The maximum and minimum temperatures are likely to be around 21 and 4 degrees Celsius, respectively, on Saturday.” A cold wave is declared when the minimum temperature is four or more degrees below normal.
According to the forecast, Delhi is likely to get respite from “cold day” or “cold wave” for four days from Sunday. “The minimum temperature may hover around 7 degrees Celsius in the first four days of the next week while the maximum is likely to remain around 23 degrees Celsius. Moderate fog is predicted from December 22 to 24,” said an official.
Meanwhile, Delhi’s air quality index (AQI) was in the “poor” category at 281. System of Air Quality and Weather Forecasting and Research (SAFAR), the forecasting body under the Union ministry of earth sciences, said, “Surface-level winds are high and west-southwesterly. High surface winds are forecast till Saturday and likely to slow down after that. The current better ventilation conditions are likely to continue for the next two days and decrease thereafter.”
AQI is forecast to stay in the “poor” to “very poor” category on Saturday but likely to deteriorate in the lower end of “very poor” on Sunday, SAFAR stated.