Light to moderate rain and a hailstorm with winds gusting up to 50 kilometres per hour are predicted to lash northwest India, including Delhi, next week, the India Meteorological Department said on Tuesday.
Coldwave conditions prevailed in the region on Tuesday with the minimum temperature settling in the range of 1 to 3 degrees Celsius in Punjab, Haryana, Delhi and north Rajasthan.
Some parts of Uttar Pradesh and north Madhya Pradesh logged their minimum temperatures in the range of 3 to 5 degrees Celsius, the India Meteorological Department (IMD) said.
The IMD said an active western disturbance was very likely to affect northwest India from January 21 to 25.
"Under its influence, rainfall/snowfall is likely to commence over the western Himalayan region in the early hours of January 21 and continue till January 25 with peak activity on January 23-24," it said in a statement.
The Met office said light to moderate hailstorm was likely at isolated places over Jammu, Himachal Pradesh, Uttarakhand, Punjab, Haryana, Chandigarh, Delhi, west Uttar Pradesh and north Rajasthan on January 23 and 24.
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Winds gusting up to 50 kilometres per hour are very likely to prevail over Punjab, Haryana, Delhi and west Uttar Pradesh occasionally on January 23-24, it said.
Delhi has not recorded any rainfall this winter season so far. The Met department attributed it to the lack of strong western disturbances in November and December.
Last year, the city had recorded 82.2 mm rainfall in January, the highest in the month since 1901.
The Sadarjung observatory, Delhi's primary weather station, recorded a minimum temperature of 2.4 degrees Celsius against 1.4 degrees on Monday.
Foggy weather disrupted road and rail movement in some parts of the northern region.
At least 15 trains were delayed by an hour to eight hours due to the foggy weather, a spokesperson for Northern Railway said.
The weather station at Lodhi Road, where the IMD headquarters is located, recorded a minimum temperature of two degrees Celsius on Tuesday.
The minimum temperature settled at 2.8 degrees Celsius at Ayanagar in southwest Delhi, 2.2 degrees at the Ridge in central Delhi and 2.3 degrees at Jafarpur in west Delhi.
Delhi saw an intense coldwave spell from January 5 to 9, the second longest in the month in a decade, according to IMD data.
It has also recorded over 50 hours of dense fog this month so far, the highest since 2019.
The Met office said coldwave conditions would abate from Thursday under the influence of two western disturbances that are likely to affect the region in quick succession.
When a western disturbance -- a weather system characterised by warm moist winds from the Middle East -- approaches a region, the wind direction changes.
The chilly northwesterly winds from the mountains stop blowing, leading to an increase in temperatures.
In the plains, a cold wave is declared if the minimum temperature dips to 4 degrees Celsius or when it is 10 degrees and 4.5 notches below normal.
A severe cold wave is when the minimum temperature dips to 2 degrees Celsius or the departure from the normal limits is by more than 6.4 notches.
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