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Delhi likely to record coldest day in 119 years, says IMD; 530 flights delayed due to fog

At least 30 Delhi-bound trains were delayed by up to seven hours due to the low visibility and dense fog.

SNS | New Delhi |

Delhi is likely to record the coldest day today in last 119 years for the month of December with the day temperature recording 9.4 degrees Celsius, the India Meteorological Department said.

The temperature recorded by the Safdurjung laboratory at 2:30 pm was 9.4 degrees Celsius.

“Delhi likely to record most coldest day today in last 119 year for Dec Month as day temp till 1430 IST of today has been unusually (cold) following a coldest trend with Safdarjung at 1430 IST has 09.4degC,” the IMD tweeted.

The weather department informed that at 1430 hours, the temperature had fallen at many places over Haryana, Chandigarh and Delhi and West Uttar Pradesh; at a few places over Punjab, West Rajasthan and Bihar and at isolated places over East Rajasthan, Madhya Pradesh and East UP.

Dense fog has blanketed Delhi and its neighbouring areas, affecting road, rail and air traffic in the region.

Heavy fog has disrupted flight operations at the Delhi airport with 20 flights diverted, four cancelled, and around 530 delayed till 12:52 pm.

Flights are operating at the airport under CAT III B conditions, which means the runway visual range (RVR) is between 50 metres and 175 metres.

At least 30 Delhi-bound trains were delayed by up to seven hours due to the low visibility and dense fog.

On Sunday, the India Meteorological Department (IMD) issued a code red warning in view of the cold wave conditions in Delhi as well as Haryana and Chandigarh.

According to IMD’s classification Code red is the highest level and a warning for the public to take action in adverse weather.

Delhi recorded the season’s lowest temperature as the minimum temperature dropped to a chilling 1.7 degrees Celsius early on Saturday.

Meanwhile, the air quality in the national capital also took a beating on Monday as it fell to “severe” category, with the Anand Vihar observatory recording air quality index (AQI) of 462 and the Okhla Phase-2 centre reporting an AQI of 494.

Since December 14, most parts in the city have witnessed a 13-day cold spell.

As Delhi residents shivered in the cold, the IMD said that the city’s mean maximum temperature in December has dipped below 20 degrees Celsius only four times in past 118 years – in 1919, 1929, and 1961 with the last in 1997.

A significant increase in wind speed is expected over Delhi-NCR from Tuesday evening under the influence of approaching western disturbance and easterly winds in the lower levels. Light rain is expected over Delhi-NCR during the night from January 1 to January 3, 2020, and hailstorm is expected on January 2, 2020.