Jammu , the winter capital city of the State remained colder than the summer capital, Srinagar, for the second consecutive day as the mercury dipped to nearly 9 degree Celsius below normal whilst dense fog blanketed the Jammu region and parts of Delhi, Punjab and Haryana terribly affecting the train and air-services.
Owing to low visibility and dense fog enveloping the Jammu region , flights were delayed for two to three hours in the morning and none of the planes landed at the airport before 1.30 p.m. Even an afternoon Indigo flight which operates between Delhi-Jammu-Delhi was cancelled. Most of the flight timings were rescheduled . Even the trains were late by three to five hours creating problems for the passengers since last night. The dense fog and nippy weather have crippled the normal life in the state and the entire northern region because vehicle operators were finding it difficult to drive due to visibility issues.
A Met spokesman told the local daily that the maximum day temperature recorded in the Jammu region was 9.3 degree Celsius while in Srinagar city the day temperature was about 13.3 degree Celsius. The standard temperature in Jammu should be 18.6 degree Celsius which implies that day temperature today went down by about 9 degree which is the lowest day temperature recorded in Jammu during this winter season until now. The minimum temperature recorded in Jammu today was 5.6 degree Celsius and it is likely to fall in next couple of days. It was sunny day in Srinagar and several other hilly towns of Jammu region including Udhampur, Reasi, Katra, Doda, Poonch, Rajouri etc.
Due to the freezing weather in the state, most of the people remain locked up inside their homes and were seen dressed in heavy woollen clothes during the morning and evening hours. The harsh weather has restrained the free movement of the people. At most places , farmers were seen warming their bodies by lighting fire to protect themselves from intense cold.
Dr J B Singh, Senior Consultant in the Department of Medicines, Govt Medical College Jammu when contacted gave out instruction to take precautions before going out . He said that the elderly persons , children and office goers must take extra care and should wear heavy woollen clothes and if possible children and elder people including blood pressure, heart and diabetes patients should avoid moving out of their homes . He further suggested to avoid consuming cold things as eating or drinking such items may make people more susceptible to cough, pneumonia, bad cold and throat infection.
For now, Srinagar recorded a highest temperature of 13.3 degree Celsius and the lowest as minus 4.4 degree Celsius which is two degrees below normal. Unlike Jammu , Srinagar these days experience pleasant sunny days. According to the Meteorological Department Srinagar will have clear sky while foggy weather will remain as such in Jammu for next 48 hours. The temperatures recorded in the Ladakh division are invariably low ranging from minus 16.4 of the previous night to minus 11.4 degree Celsius.
The mercury ranges between 13.6 degree Celsius to 5.0 degree Celsius at Katra Mata Vaishnodevi .Bhaderwah recorded a maximum temperature of 14.5 deg Celsius and minimum minus 2.4 degree Celsius, Gulmarg in Kashmir minus 7.5 degree Celsius while Pahalgam maximum 9.6 degree Celsius and minimum -7.5 degree Celsius temperature today.
A Railway spokesman said that most of the trains were delayed and did not reach the station on time , Archna Express which normally reach Jammu by 10 a.m. was late by five hours and reached Jammu station at 3.30 pm. Shalimar and Jammu Mail trains were late by about an hour, Malwa Express by two and half hours, Jabalpur Express and Kanpur Express by one and half hours, Swaraj Express by one hour and so on. The hazy conditions have also badly affected the inter-state bus services as well .