Delhi winter: Cold wave and fog cause chaos in northern India

Image credit: BBC

A strong, protracted cold wave is currently affecting parts of northern India, which has disrupted daily life.

More than a hundred flights and scores of trains have been delayed due to dense fog, which has caused mayhem at airports and train terminals.

Authorities in the nation’s capital, Delhi, requested that schools extend the winter break and cancelled classes.

On Sunday, the city’s minimum temperature in some areas dipped to 1.9 °C.

Temperatures in Kashmir, which is administered by India, dropped to -6 °C (21 °F), and other northern regions have also been affected.

When the overnight low drops below 4C, India’s weather service announces a cold wave.

To wait for better weather, the meteorological authority has advised citizens to “avoid or minimise outside activities.” People have also been cautioned to drive carefully in thick fog.

Particularly in Delhi, where wintertime pollution levels are quite high, the extreme cold is predicted to hurt health.

For India’s homeless population, which frequently sleeps by the roadside and at railroad stations, the bitter cold has been especially difficult.

Delhi experienced one of the foggiest days so far this season on Sunday, with the city being entirely shrouded in a thick mist for several hours.

There have been reports of over a hundred flights at the Delhi airport being delayed or diverted because of poor visibility. According to the Indian Railways, which transports over 23 million people daily, about 29 trains were running behind time in northern India.

Monday’s weather was still gloomy, and slow-moving vehicles were visible on the highways. As a result of “heavy fog and poor visibility” in Delhi, domestic airline IndiGo advised customers to check the status of their flights before going to the airport.

Officials have stated that they anticipate the cold wave to pass starting on January 10.

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