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Amritsar records -0.5 C

Chandigarh, January 3
Cold wave, currently sweeping north-west India, has claimed the life of a person in Haryana and the mercury dipped to minus 0.5 degrees Celsius at Amritsar in the plains today.

One person died of cold in Sonepat district of Haryana. His body was found on the Sonepat-Rohtak road.

With this death, 17 persons have died due to the cold wave and fog-related incidents in Punjab and Haryana so far.

The minimum temperature hovered one degree to five degrees below normal at many places in the region even as certain areas in the region were enveloped in fog reducing visibility considerably, affecting road traffic.

The visibility was nil at Udhampur, Amritsar, Pathankot, Adampur and upto 100 metres at Sarsawa, 400 metres at Ambala, 500 metres at Palam (Delhi), 600 metres at Jammu and 800 metres at Bathinda and Hindon.

People groaned under piercing cold wave in Punjab as the temperature stayed low. The minimum hovered five degrees below normal at Amritsar recording minus 0.5 degrees Celsius, turning it the coldest place in the state. Ludhiana also recorded five degrees below normal temperature at 1.5 degrees while Patiala showed 5.1 degrees, two degrees below normal.

Cold wave also swept Haryana with the minimum temperature dipping two degrees to three degrees below normal. The mercury fell to 4.3 degrees at Ambala, 5.2 degrees at Karnal and 5.5 degrees at Hisar.

The cold wave intensified in Himachal with many areas recording a sharp fall in the mercury. People in the tribal districts of Lahaul Spiti and Kinnaur and Pangi valley and Bharmour area in Chamba district were facing harsh cold wave as the minimum hovered below freezing point in these areas.

All lakes, including the Suraj Tal and the Chander Tal, springs, natural water bodies and large stretch of Chandrabhaga river in Spiti valley in Himachal have frozen. This has resulted in sharp fall in the discharge of water in snowfed Sutlej, Beas and Ravi rivers.

Intense cold wave conditions prevailed in Mandi, Kulu and Kangra districts. Sundernagar in Mandi district recorded the minimum at minus 1.0 degree while Bhuntar in Kulu district reported minus 0.7 degree, two degrees below normal. Icy-cold winds lashed Shimla recording a minimum of 3.3 degrees.

Chandigarh and its adjoining areas in Punjab and Haryana were also under the impact of cold wave with the mercury hovering three degrees below normal. The minimum dipped to 4.2 degrees in the city from 6.4 degrees Celsius recorded yesterday.

The Kashmir valley continued to be in the grip of cold wave with Srinagar recording minus 3.7 degrees while Jammu registered 3.5 degrees, five degrees below normal.

The Weather Office has predicted sunny day in the region with fog and mist occurring in Punjab and Haryana in next 24 hours. Ground frost may occur at many places in Punjab and a few places in Haryana in the next two nights. UNI

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