Fresh snowfall in Himachal, toll in cold wave at 203

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New Delhi, Feb 4 (UNI) Fresh snowfall occurred in Himachal Pradesh and rain lashed the plains since last night as three more deaths due to the cold wave were reported from Uttar Pradesh taking the nationwide toll to 203.

With the three deaths, reported from Kaushambi and Sant Kabir Nagar districts, the toll due to the cold wave stands at 144 in UP, 22 in Jammu and Kashmir, 15 in Gujarat, ten in Himachal Pradesh, four each in Bihar and Punjab, three in Maharashtra and one in Sikkim.

Even as minimum temperature recorded a slight increase, the cold wave swept across UP with Gorakhpur, Jhansi, Agra and Bareilly divisions recording a dip in night temperatures, the met department said. Saharanpur was the coldest with four degrees C.

However, the minimum temperature in Lucknow stood at 7.8 degrees.

giving the people some respite from the bitter cold.

The cold wave sweeping Delhi over the past week abated today slightly with the minimum temperature rising to 6.2 degrees.

In North-west India, piercing cold wave swept Punjab and Haryana following rains at certain places overnight in the twin states where the night temperatures hovered below normal.

Ludhiana with 3.1 degrees turned out to be coldest place in Punjab, followed by Amritsar recording 3.4 degrees and Patiala registering 5.0 degrees.

Adampur, near Jalandhar, recorded the minimum temperature at 4.2 degrees and Halwara 5.8 degrees. The temperatures in the Malwa belt also showed a marginal decrease with Bathinda recording the minimum at 5.4 degrees. However, the minimum temperature showed an upward movement at at the border town of Pathankot registering 7.2 degrees.

In Haryana, Ambala with 4.1 degrees was the coldest place in while Narnaul recorded 4.2 degrees, Hissar 6.2 degrees and Karnal 6.4 degrees.Chandigarh recorded the minimum at 4.8 degrees.

A severe cold wave swept Himachal Pradesh following another spell of snowfall in higher reaches and rain in mid and lower areas of the state.

The entire Kullu and Kangra valleys were under the impact of cold wave following snowfall on the Rohtang Pass and Dhauladhar ranges. The minimum settled at 2.4 degrees at Bhuntar in Kullu district and at 3.1 degrees at Sundernagar in Mandi district.

Shimla and its adjoining areas, which experienced snowfall yesterday, were also lashed by cold wave. The capital town recorded the minimum at minus 0.9 degrees celsius, three degrees below normal.

Weather remained unpredictable for the past few days in the Kashmir valley with dry nights snowfall in the morning and warm afternoons. Pahalgam recorded coldest with temperature at minus 4.4 degrees.

Srinagar and its adjoining areas experienced fresh snowfall early this morning. However, in the afternoon the weather became clear and bit warm.

Traffic was partially allowed this afternoon on the 300-km-long Srinagar-Jammu national highway, after remaining suspended due to heavy snowfall and landslides since last night.

Official sources said hundreds of vehicles, including those carrying passengers and truck loaded with essential commodities were stranded on the highway. About one thousand tourists and others were also stranded.

The night temperature in Drass was recorded at minus 19.5 while the maximum was minus 5.5 degree. At Kargil the minimum was minus 14.5 and the maximum minus 3.5 degree. The minimum at Leh was minus 20 degree, official sources said.

In the North-east, Manipur experienced cold weather recording a minimum temperature at 2.9 degrees and the maximum at 21.3 degrees, Met sources said.

In Bihar, the cold wave condition that swept across Patna and its neighbourhood for the past few days abated with the mercury rising to 10 degrees.

Cold wave prevailed in Indore and Ujjain divisions of Malwa region of Madhya Pradesh, while mercury fell from yesterday's nine degree to three degrees in Ujjain.

The weatherman said cold wave conditions also prevailed in Jharkhand and in some parts of Assam, Meghalaya, Bihar and Uttarakhand and at isolated places in Vidarbha and Chattisgarh.

Night temperatures were appreciably below normal in some parts of Nagaland, Manipur, Mizoram, Tripura, West Bengal, Sikkim, Orissa, west Madhya Pradesh, interior Karnataka and in remaining parts of Assam, Meghalaya, east Uttar Pradesh, Vidarbha and Chattisgarh. They were below normal in some parts of Punjab, Rajasthan, Gujarat, Madhya Maharashtra and coastal Karnataka.

Night temperatures were appreciably above normal in some parts of Andhra Pradesh, Tamil Nadu and in remaining parts of Gujarat.

They were above normal in some parts of Haryana and in remaining parts of west Madhya Pradesh.

UNI TEAM MS HS1925

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