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Cold wave unabated in hills, avalanche warnings in Himachal Pradesh

Cold wave unabated in hills, avalanche warnings in Himachal Pradesh
New Delhi Several parts of north India remained in the grip of bitter cold wave as mercury stayed below normal while the national capital experienced pleasant weather on Monday with the maximum settling a notch above normal.

Delhiites woke up to a sunny morning with the mercury recording a low of 8.5 degrees Celsius which was two notches below normal. The maximum in the city touched 23.8 degrees, a notch above normal.

The weather office has forecast mainly clear skies in Delhi on Tuesday with a possibility of fog in the morning.

In Kashmir, the mercury stayed below freezing point across the Valley for the third day running with Srinagar recording a low of -2.1 degrees Celsius.

The ski resort of Gulmarg in north Kashmir saw the mercury settling at -10 degrees while the minimum in Leh and Kargil in the Ladakh region touched -17.4 and -16.8 degrees Celsius respectively.

The chill continued to torment Himachal Pradesh with the tribal areas reeling under sub-zero temperatures.

Lahaul and Spiti, Kinnaur and parts of Chamba district remained cut off from the rest of the state for the 26th day today while normal life remained affected in Shimla and Kullu districts. Many areas in Kinnaur district have been without electricity for more than three weeks now.

Warnings have been issued against likelihood of avalanches as upper hills groaned under intense chill with the minimum staying five to 20 degrees below freezing point.

Keylong and Kalpa in Lahaul and Spiti and Kinnaur districts recorded lows of -10.7 and -8 degrees Celsius respectively while the tourist resort of Manali shivered at -2.4 degrees.

Thick ground frost in middle and higher hills disrupted vehicular traffic in the morning while water pipes were frozen in several areas as mercury dropped below the freezing point at night.

Punjab and Haryana did not have much relief from the cold either as the mercury dropped below normal with Amritsar, at 4.8 degrees Celsius recording the lowest temperature across the two neighbouring states.

While the mercury at Amritsar had settled two notches below normal, Hisar was the coldest place in Haryana at 5.3 degrees, down four notches from the normal.

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