Cold waves swept Punjab, Haryana and Chandigarh with minimum temperatures hovering around several notches below normal even as fog reduced visibility this morning at some places.

Freezing cold swept Amritsar, which recorded a below normal low of 0.8 degrees Celsius.

Ludhiana and Patiala, too, experienced the chill recording respective lows of 5.8 deg C and 5.6 deg C, the MeT office here said.

Hisar, Bhiwani and Narnaul in Haryana reeled under extreme cold recording minimum temperature of 1 deg C each.

Karnal had a cold night at 3.4 deg C, while Ambala recorded a low of 5.8 deg C.

Chandigarh, too, had a cold night at 5.6 deg C.

According to the MeT, fog reduced visibility this morning at places including Chandigarh, Hisar and Karnal.

There would be no immediate relief from the biting cold over the next few days, the MeT said.

Kashmir Valley remains cut off

The Srinagar-Jammu national highway connecting Kashmir with the rest of the country remained closed for the third consecutive day on Thursday as the Valley and Ladakh region reeled under intense cold conditions with the night temperature in Pahalgam plunging to the season’s lowest of minus 12.2 degrees Celsius.

“The National Highway is closed for the day, but the stranded vehicles will be allowed to move towards Srinagar later in the day. However, no fresh traffic will be allowed to ply on the highway today,” a spokesman of the traffic department said.

The 294-km road, only all weather road link between Kashmir and rest of the world, was closed on Tuesday following heavy snowfall across the valley.

After the New Year brought some respite from bone chilling cold for Delhiites, the minimum temperature again dipped to 5 degrees Celsius today.

Delhi shivers as mercury dips

After the New Year brought some respite from bone chilling cold for Delhiites, the minimum temperature again dipped to 5 degrees Celsius on Thursday.

The city woke up to a shallow fog in the morning.

According to the MET department, the temperature may fall further in the later part of the day.

The maximum temperature is predicted to be 16 degrees Celsius. The humidity in the morning was recorded at 97 per cent.

Two dead in Rajasthan

Two beggars were found dead in pink city which recorded season’s lowest minimum temperature even as icy winds and fog continued unabated in Rajasthan affecting normal life and vehicular traffic.

Two old beggars were found dead in open area of Jalupura and Subhash Chowk areas here in the city on Wednesday, police said.

Engulfed with mist and fog, Jaipur recorded the season’s lowest temperature of 2.8 degrees C, about 5 degrees below normal, as against 6.4 degree C yesterday, a MeT report said.

While Churu recorded the lowest temperature of minus 1.6 degrees C on Wednesday night, Pilani recorded a minimum of 1.3 degrees C followed by Sriganganagar at 1.9 deg C, and Bikaner 2.0 degree C.

Barring Hadauti region (Kota division) where mercury was above ten degrees C during night, rest of the state reeled under intense cold conditions where the minimum temperature was below 8 degree C.

The western districts of Jaisalmer, Barmer, Jodhpur also shivered with a minimum temperature in the range of 4.4 to 6 degrees C.

According to the MeT forecast, no immediate respite from cold conditions is expected in next one week in the state.

Iboyaima Laithangbam reports from Imphal

On the eastern side, Manipur has been experiencing a cold spell for the last three weeks. According to MET department the temparture on Thursday in the state was 5 degree selsius.

The mountain districts of Senapati and Ukhrul are the worst hit areas in the state. For the past two weeks the villagers in these mountain districts have been facing icy weather. In absence of electricity they are keeping themselves warm by burning firewoods collected from the mountains.

Reports from Mao, a hill station in Senapati district said that there was thick snow on Thursday morning in the villages and mountains.

Weatherman said that the cold spell will continue for some more days.