Temperatures to dip in north India

New Delhi:

Widespread snowfall in Jammu and Kashmir, Himachal Pradesh and the upper reaches of Uttarakhand on Sunday will lead to a fall in the minimum temperature by around two-four degrees Celsius over northwestern India from Tuesday, according to the India Meteorological Department (IMD).

As a result of the western disturbance (WD) that brought rain and snow, most parts of northwest India saw a significant improvement in air quality that settled in the “moderate” and satisfactory” category in several places; it is unusual in mid-November and that too immediately after Diwali celebrations.

“There was snowfall at many places over Jammu and Kashmir, Himachal Pradesh and over Uttarakhand. Rain and thundershowers occurred over Punjab, Haryana, Chandigarh, Delhi and Uttar Pradesh and some places over north Rajasthan. Today, the winds are easterly but they will shift to north-westerly from tomorrow (Tuesday). So cold winds will be blowing from the Western Himalayas where snowfall has just happened. We are expecting minimum temperature to drop under 10 degrees Celsius in the next couple of days,” said Kuldeep Shrivastava, head, regional weather forecasting centre.

The lowest minimum temperature recorded over northwest India was 11.2 degrees Celsius — in Bhatinda. As the western disturbance is still impacting the region and winds are easterly, several places recorded above normal minimum temperatures on Monday.

Minimum temperatures are likely to fall gradually by 2-4 degrees Celsius over Madhya Pradesh, Gujarat, Bihar, West Bengal and Sikkim during the next four-five days. Due to rain and snow in most parts of northwestern India, Diwali pollution dispersed rapidly.

On Monday afternoon, Agra, Baghpat, Bahadurgarh, Bhiwadi and Faridabad, among others — all of which recorded “severe” air quality on Diwali day — settled at “moderate” category air. Ambala, Alwar, Bhatinda, Ballabgarh. Chandigarh and Meerut, all in northwest India, recorded “satisfactory” air quality on Monday.

“Air quality across northwest India has improved due to rain and thundershowers….Though wind direction will change to northwesterly, wind speed will not reduce completely,” explained Vijay Soni, scientist at IMD’s air quality division.

A fresh western disturbance is very likely to affect the western Himalayan region from November 18. “A feeble WD is again likely to impact higher reaches of Jammu and Kashmir and Himachal Pradesh on November 18. So the minimum temperature will drop on November 16 and 17 but rise again on 18 before falling substantially after that. The current active WD coincided with Diwali, which brought great relief from air pollution to the entire northwest India,” added RK Jenamani, senior scientist at the national weather forecasting centre.

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