Sunday has been Delhi's coldest day this season, with the temperature dipping to 2.6 degrees Celsius, five notches below the normal average. Dense fog reduced visibility to less than 50 meters in the morning, disrupting both flight and train schedules.
Prime Minister Narendra Modi as well as BJP chief Amit Shah were unable to go to Jharkhand on Sunday as a result, missing new state chief minister Raghubar Das' swearing-in ceremony in Ranchi.
Was to travel to Jharkhand to attend the oath taking ceremony of Shri Raghubar Das but am unable to do so due to weather conditions.— Narendra Modi (@narendramodi) December 28, 2014
Modi later congratulated Das on twitter, saying "People of Jharkhand voted for stability. I congratulate them & pray that Jharkhand scales new heights of progress in the coming years."
Around 55 flights and 70 trains were affected due to the weather conditions in Delhi, but clearer skies are predicted for the rest of the day.
"The minimum temperature recorded at 8.30 AM was 2.6 degree Celsius. The humidity recorded was 97 per cent and the visibility was less than 50 metres," said a MeT official, according to PTI. "The maximum temperature is likely to settle at 19.2 degree Celsius and the minimum is likely to touch 3 degrees."
PTI quoted an official saying that 55 flights were delayed and 3 other international flights were diverted as a result of fog. Four trains had to be cancelled and six of them rescheduled, a Northern Railway spokesperson told PTI. Meanwhile IANS reported that 63 trains coming into the city were delayed.
Other places in north India including Kanpur, Lucknow were equally affected.
Home Minister Rajnath Singh too was unable to fly from Lucknow to Jharkhand for the new CM's swearing-in ceremony on time.
Due to dense fog in Lucknow I shall not be able to reach Ranchi to attend the swearing in ceremony in time.— Rajnath Singh (@BJPRajnathSingh) December 28, 2014
Meanwhile seven people died in Uttar Pradesh and Punjab on Friday night due to the cold and fog. Five people were killed in Barabanki district on Friday night. Three people, including a home guard, died of severe cold in different parts of Barabanki, while two others were killed in an accident caused due to poor visibility on Friday night, reported PTI.
(with agency inputs)