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Delhi gets colder: Temperature to fall further from Sunday, IMD predicts

New Delhi: The minimum temperature in the national capital dipped to 4
PUBLISHED ON JAN 23, 2021 12:18 AM IST

New Delhi: The minimum temperature in the national capital dipped to 4.2 degrees Celsius on Friday, even as calm winds led to a spike in pollution levels, weather experts said on Friday. The India Meteorological Department forecast that the temperature will rise slightly on Saturday, but will fall from Sunday evening.

On Friday, the minimum temperature recorded at Delhi’s Safdarjung weather station, considered the official marker for the city, was 4.2°C — three below the season’s normal. The maximum temperature, meanwhile, was 18.6°C — three below normal.

IMD scientists said the drop in temperature on Friday was caused because the fog layer in the early hours moved further away from the ground, which did not allow temperatures to rise during the day.

Kuldeep Srivastava, head of IMD’s regional weather forecasting centre, said, “The first reason for the temperature to fall on Friday was the rising of the fog in the morning. Apart from this, the wind blowing over the city also carried high moisture content, which also kept temperatures low.”

Srivastava said that on Saturday, the minimum temperature will rise to around 6°C, but will fall again from Sunday, till January 28.

A forecast by the National Weather Forecasting Centre of the IMD said a fresh western disturbance hit the western Himalaya regions on Friday, because of which the wind direction in Delhi will change from north-westerly to easterly, which will cause the probable temperature rise in Delhi on Saturday.

“Rise in minimum temperatures by 2-3°C is very likely during next 48 hours (January 23-24). A fall by 3-5°C during subsequent the subsequent three days (January 25-27) over most parts of northwest and central India is also predicted,” the NWDC forecast read.

After the western disturbance passes, Delhi will get colder from Monday. “On Monday, the minimum temperature is expected to be around 5°C, but by Tuesday it will fall further and reach around 4°C,” a senior IMD scientist said.

The change in the wind direction from north-westerly to easterly on Friday also causing slower winds, which led to a spike in pollution levels.

Central Pollution Control Board (CPCB) recordings show that the overall air quality index (AQI) on Friday was 364, in the ‘very poor’ zone. On Thursday, the 24-hour average AQI was 296, categorised as ‘poor’ in the CPCB scale.

The Union ministry of earth science’s air quality monitoring centre, System of Air Quality and Weather Forecasting and Research (Safar), has forecast that the wind speed and ventilation will improve on Saturday.

“Surface winds are set to improve for Saturday under the influence of a fresh western disturbance. Due to better ventilation condition, AQI is forecasted to marginally improve on January 23 and January 24,” the Safar forecast read.

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