New Delhi, Jan 2: Mild rains intensified the winter chill though there was marginal increase in mercury levels in vast swathes of north India, even as the Kashmir Valley and higher reaches of Uttarakhand reeled under biting cold.
A chilly rainy morning greeted Delhiites even as minimum temperature rose by 2.2 degrees from yesterday, settling three notches above the season's average at 10.2 degrees Celsius.
Scattered rains across the national capital, however, brought the maximum temperature down by 5.6 degrees to settle at 16 degrees, five notches below the season's average.
Rains disrupted running of 42 trains, though flight operations at the Indira Gandhi International Airport here were smooth. Similar weather conditions prevailed in Rajasthan, where too night temperatures increased by a few notches but rainfall brought down the maximum adding to the winter chill.
Sriganganagar was the coldest recorded place in the state at a minimum of 7.5 degrees. Churu, Jaisalmer, Bikaner, Jaipur and Ajmer also recorded above normal night temperatures of 9.2, 9.8, 8.6, 11.4 and 11.8 degrees Celsius, respectively.
However, day temperatures dipped by six to seven degrees Celsius in many places after rain. Jaipur, Kota and Udaipur recorded 1.8, 0.3 and 0.4 mm rains.
In view of the prevailing cold conditions, the state government has authorised district collectors to announce or extend holidays in schools.
Meanwhile, the higher reaches of Uttarakhand received snowfall while the plains were lashed by rains, with the sudden change in weather leading to a drop in temperature making people shiver.
Mountainous areas of both Garhwal and Kumaon regions including Badrinath, Kedarnath, Gangotri, Yamunotri, Auli, Munsyari and Dharchula have been receiving snowfall since morning whereas plains including Dehradun, Nainital, Almora, Chamoli and Haldwani are being lashed by showers.
Temperatures also dipped in the Kashmir Valley after some respite for a few days. Srinagar, the summer capital of Jammu and Kashmir, recorded a minimum of minus 5.4 degrees Celsius, down from the previous night's minus 4.8 degrees.
Srinagar had witnessed the season's coldest night on December 27 when the mercury dropped to minus 5.6 degrees Celsius.