Evening rain gives Delhi cleaner air, temperature likely to dip
Moderate to light rains were reported from across the national capital on Sunday, with parts of the city also receiving hailstorm, the India Meteorological Department (IMD) said, and predicted that the weather will clear up by Monday, and temperatures will start dropping in the coming days.
On Sunday, Delhi’s Safdarjung observatory, which provides representative data for the entire city, 27mm rainfall was reported till 8.30pm. Palam weather station received 4.9 mm rain.
IMD scientists said that while ‘trace’ showers (not enough to be recorded in the observatory) was reported in most parts of the city till Sunday afternoon, rains intensified in the evening with some areas also receiving hailstorm.
“Radar images indicate that parts of northwest Delhi and Haryana received hailstorm. We can only report hailstorm for sure when it is reported over an observatory; for any other part of the city, we rely on public and media reports,” said a senior Met official.
Forecasters explained that Sunday’s rain was caused by a western disturbance, which also led to intense and widespread showers and thunderstorm in parts of Punjab, Haryana and Rajasthan. In Delhi, the clouds are expected to clear up by late Sunday night, they said.
“Western disturbance is moving away and the weather will clear up in Delhi by Monday. Temperatures are also likely to start falling from tomorrow (Monday),” said Mahesh Palawat, vice-president (meteorology and climate change), Skymet Weather Services.
The rainfall also resulted in a fall in pollution levels. Since most of Sunday’s showers were concentrated towards the evening hours, the overall air quality index, which is released by the Central Pollution Control Board (CPCB) at 4pm, showed only a minor drop from Saturday. On Sunday, the overall AQI was 160 in the ‘moderate’ zone.
By 9pm, pollution levels fell further dropped to 158. At 10.30pm, of the 39 monitoring stations listed on the CPCB’s Sameer app, only five showed air in the poor zone. The air quality at all others were in the moderate zone.
“The AQI will improve but remain in the moderate zone on Monday. After that as the winds change back to northwesterly, AQI will start rising again during the week,” another senior Met official said.
Some parts of the city witnessed waterlogging, officials said. The Delhi Traffic Police posted on its official Twitter handle that the Mehrauli-Badarpur Road in south Delhi was closed due to waterlogging at Pul Prahladpur underpass and asked commuters to take alternate routes.
“Due to waterlogging at Pul Prahladpur underpass, MB road is closed. Please avoid this route. Kindly take alternate route MB Road-Maa Anandmai Marg towards Badarpur,” the Delhi Traffic Police tweeted.
Other places from where waterlogging was reported included Kirari, Rohtak Road, and Nangloi, civic officials said.
However, no major waterlogging was reported from anywhere else, they added.
The city reported a maximum temperature of 31.5 degrees celsius and a minimum of 19 degrees Celsius, IMD officials said.
Last week, the city recorded recorded 87.9 mm rainfall between Sunday night and Monday, the most in a day since an October 1956 day when Delhi recorded 111mm rain. Delhi has now broken a weather record for the 15th straight month, records showed.
IMD data shows that despite a late onset, Delhi this year has had one of the most erratic monsoons ever. It started off with an unusually delayed arrival — instead of its normal date of June 27, monsoon this year entered the Capital only on July 13, 16 days behind schedule. This was the most-delayed arrival in 19 years.
In 2002, monsoon hit Delhi on July 19.