Heavy rain along with hailstorms caused a sharp dip in temperature in parts of Delhi and its neighbouring areas on Tuesday morning. The minimum temperature settled at five notches above normal.
Traffic slowed down across the city and visibility was low because of the darkened skies.
"Generally cloudy conditions with light to moderate rainfall at most places and isolated thunderstorm activity accompanied with strong surface winds most likely during January 21 and 22," the weather department said.
"Delhi can expect light rain/drizzle only now as the weather system has moved to west Uttar Pradesh," India Meteorological Department (IMD) said. The IMD had earlier predicted light drizzle in the capital for the day with moderate showers at some places.
"The sky will remain generally cloudy throughout the day with chances of light rain or thunder showers. There are also possibilities of isolated hail storm," a met official said, adding that gusty winds could add to the chill.
At 8.30 a.m., Safdarjung recorded 14.8 mm of rainfall, an IMD official told news agency IANS.
"Another Western Disturbance would affect Northwest India from January 24 onwards," warned the IMD.
"Throughout the day, light to moderate rains accompanied by thunderstorms will cause the maximum temperature to drop to around 19 degrees Celsius. The minimum was expected to remain around 11 degrees Celsius," the Met forecast.
At least 15 trains heading to the city were delayed due to fog and low visibility, said news agency ANI. These include Howrah-New Delhi Poorva Express, Malda-Delhi Junction Farakka Express, Mumbai Amritsar Express and others. The Puri-New Delhi Purushottam Express was late by six hours, Northern Railways said.
As the shower spell led to slow traffic movement, airlines such as Vistara took to Twitter leaving a message for the passengers. "Due to rain, there is traffic congestion enroute to Delhi airport road. Customers are advised to allow more time for their journey to the airport," they tweeted.
Delhi and its neighbourhood have been witnessing bouts of rain and thundershowers since Monday afternoon, a day after the warmest January day since 2012. The showers continued during evening and night leading to a drop in temperature.
The Delhi Traffic Police took to Twitter to issued advisories.
Commuters were asked to avoid Lala Lajpat Rai Marg, Barapula, Defence Colony Flyover as a road has caved in near the Lodhi Road crematorium, in which a bus is trapped. Another road going towards the INA market from Barapullah has also caved in, the police tweeted.
For the first time this season, the air quality also improved from the usual "very poor and severe" to "moderate" category as rains caused the pollution to settle while strong winds dissipated the particulate matters.
The air quality at hotspots like Anand Vihar, ITO, Jawaharlal Nehru Stadium, Mundka, Dwarka Sector-8, Ashok Vihar and Jahangirpuri improved to 'moderate' category.
(With inputs from PTI and IANS)
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