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Intense cold wave grips north India

January 07, 2011 03:23 IST

Eleven more people died in Uttar Pradesh as the intense cold wave sweeping north India maintained its firm grip over the region with Kargil town in Jammu and Kashmir freezing at minus 16.4 degrees Celsius.

The body of a middle-aged man was found in Reasi in Jammu and Kashmir and officials said he died due to extreme cold conditions.

People in the national capital continued to shiver at below normal temperatures with the weatherman predicting no respite in the coming days. The maximum hovered around 14.5 degrees, a good six degrees below normal while the minimum inched up to 5.3, a notch higher than yesterday's 4.2 deg C.

With the fresh deaths, the toll due to cold conditions in Uttar Pradesh has reached 58 this winter. While four persons each died in Deoria and Barabanki districts, two deaths were reported from Pratapgarh and one from Jaunpur since yesterday, official sources said.

The state capital Lucknow, which witnessed a heavy fog cover, recorded a minimum temperature of 4.8 degrees Celsius, which was two degrees below normal and a maximum of 12 deg C, 11 notches below normal.

Agra was the coldest place in the state which recorded a minimum of 0.6 deg C, six degrees below normal.

In Jammu and Kashmir, the minimum temperatures in Leh and Kargil were recorded at minus 16.2 and minus 16.4 deg C respectively, while Kashmir division continued to reel under the intense cold wave, the Met office said.

The night temperature in the summer capital Srinagar continued to stay two degrees below normal for this time of the year, settling at minus 5.0 degrees Celsius.

Qazigund, the gateway town to Kashmir, was the coldest place in the Valley, recording a minimum of minus 9.8 deg C.

Following the intense cold, parts of world famous Dal Lake and other water bodies in the Valley remain frozen, providing a rare experience for the tourists but bringing hardships to the Dal dwellers.

The high altitude tribal areas in Himachal Pradesh reeled under freezing cold conditions as minimum temperatures dropped further, hitting normal life severely.

Keylong, the headquarters of Lahaul and Spiti district, experienced the season's coldest day with the mercury dipping to minus 15 deg C. Other tribal areas recorded minimum temperatures in the range of minus 18 and minus 25 deg C.

Surajtal and Chandratal lakes and 70-km stretch of Chandrabhaga river, a tributary of Spiti, have completely frozen.

Orissa reported the first death due to cold this winter as mercury plummeted to as low as minus one degree Celsius in Kandhamal district with a mild snowfall.

The death was reported from Sundargarh district, where a man succumbed to intense cold as mercury touched freezing point. The middle-aged man was found lying on NH 25 near Kusumdihi last night and was declared dead when brought to hospital, police said.

In Daringbadi, Kandhamal district, minimum temperature was recorded minus one deg C with thin ice forming on roof-tops and foliages. Mild snowfall was also witnessed in Kandhamal and Sundargarh districts, MET officials said, adding that the cold wave condition is likely to prevail in the interior parts of the state for the next 48 hours. Similarly, in many other parts of state, the cold wave brought minimum temperature below 10 deg C, forcing people to take help of bonfire to keep them warm.

In Phulbani, the minimum was 3 deg C, while Baripada, Keonjahr and Titlagarh recorded a low of 6, 6.2 and 6.5 deg C respectively. In Bhawanipatna mercury settled at 6.5 deg C. Koraput (7.2 deg C), Jharsuguda (7.9 deg C), Balangir (8 deg C), Balasore (9.2 deg C), Hirakud (9.4 deg C), Angul (9.6 deg C) and Chandbali (9.8 deg C) also experienced cold wave. In state capital Bhubaneswar and Malkangiri the minimum temperature settled at 11.2 deg

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