Cold wave maintains grip on North-west: toll 230'

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New Delhi, Feb 11 (UNI) Cold wave maintained its icy grip on north-west India as the mercury stayed low at most places, touching minus 1.6 degrees celsius at Adampur in Punjab with Delhi recording the coldest day in February in last five years.

Chilly winds swept Punjab, Haryana and Himachal Pradesh as the night temperatures stayed two degrees to eight degrees below normal.

The nationwide toll this winter stood at 230 with 141 deaths in Uttar Pradesh, 33 in Jammu and Kashmir, 26 in Gujarat, 16 in Himachal Pradesh, four each in Bihar and Punjab, three in Maharashtra and one each in Bihar, Sikkim and Madhya Pradesh.

The cold wave conditions in Delhi are likely to persist for the next few days with the weatherman forecasting cold winds during the next 24 hours. The minimum temperature will be around 3 degrees with mainly clear sky in the next 24 hours.

Cold wave gave people a tough time in Himachal Pradesh and extreme cold conditions prevailed in the tribal areas where lakes, springs and natural water bodies have already frozen. The mercury hovered at minus 9.4 degrees at Kalpa in tribal Kinnaur district.

Icy-cold winds lashed the capital town of Shimla recording a minimum of minus 0.3 degrees, three degrees below normal.

Cold wave also lashed mid and lower hills in the state.

In Haryana, the temperature hovered at five to eight degrees below normal.

The Kashmir valley continued to be in the grip of unabated cold wave with Srinagar recording minus 6.2 degrees while Jammu registered 4.7 degrees, four degrees below normal.

Leh was the coldest place in the valley after the temperature dipped to minus 24 degrees. Night remained cold with minus 6.2 degree Celsius in Srinagar, the second coldest day in February and minus 10 degree at Pahalgam.

Kargil and Drass, the second coldest place in the world after Siberia, recorded below freezing day and night temperatures.

Majority roads in the far flung and remote areas remained cut off due to snow while people face power and water crisis after water tapes and sources were frozen.

More than 3500 people, including women and children had to spend night in their vehicles on the highway braving below freezing temperature after the Kashmir highway was closed yet again, this time due to slippery road conditions because of below freezing temperature.

Water supply in many areas was affected due to freezing of water in the taps, which, however, defreezed as the day progressed.

Mumbaikars got some respite from the cold with the minimum temperature going up to 13.4 degrees.

Severe cold wave conditions prevailed in Haryana, Punjab, Rajasthan, madhya Pradesh and Gujarat. Cold wave conditions also prevailed in some parts of Jharkhand, and at isolated places in Vidarbha and Chattisgarh.

Mainly dry weather will prevail in Bihar, Uttar Pradesh, Rajasthan, Madhya Pradesh, Vidarbha and Gujarat.

Towards the east, rain or thundershowers are likely to occur at few places in Arunachal Pradesh and at isolated places in Assam, Meghalaya, Nagaland, Maanipur, Mizoram, Tripura, West Bengal, Sikkim and Orissa.

In the Deccan region, minimum temperatures rose at a few places over Coastal and South Interior Karnataka and changed little over the north interior parts of the state.

Rainfall occurred at many places over Coastal Andhra Pradesh and a few places over Rayalaseema. Isolated rainfall occurred over Telangana. The lowest minimum temperature of 15 degree was recorded at Khammam.

Night temperatures were appreciably to markedly above normal in some parts of Andhra Pradesh, Tamil Nadu and interior Karnataka and were above normal in some parts of Marathwada.

UNI Team AKJ RAI1919

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