The India Meteorological Department (IMD) said in its latest bulletin several parts of northwest India, including Punjab, Haryana and Rajasthan, among others, must brace for ground frost conditions from Saturday, December 18.
Apart from this, dense to very dense fog along with cold wave conditions have also been forecast for states and Union territories (UTs) in the northwest part of India.
On Thursday, the Met department said cold wave conditions, which is very typical during the winter season in northwest and central India, are expected to set in over Haryana, Punjab, Chandigarh and north Rajasthan between December 18 and 20.
It added that light to moderate rainfall or snow is likely over the western Himalayan region between December 17 and 19.
The upper areas of Kashmir on Thursday received light snowfall as a cold wave passed through various regions of the valley, with Srinagar recording minus 3.8 degrees Celsius at night. Gulmarg’s temperature dipped even further to minus 8.6 degrees Celsius.
Meanwhile, Delhi on Thursday recorded the season’s lowest maximum temperature with 19.8 degrees Celsius – three degrees below normal, while the minimum temperature increased marginally to settle at 8.7 degrees Celsius.
According to the latest IMD bulletin, there will be a gradual drop in minimum temperatures by 2-3 degrees Celsius in most parts of northwest India and Maharashtra, and by 3-5 degrees Celsius over a majority part of central India over the next four days.
Cold wave conditions
The IMD predicted that over the next four days (till December 21), cold wave conditions will hit Jammu and Kashmir, Ladakh, Himachal Pradesh, Uttarakhand, Punjab, Haryana and Chandigarh.
The same weather alert has been issued for north Rajasthan over the next five days, for Gujarat over the next three days, and over west Uttar Pradesh between December 19 and 21.
Severe cold wave conditions
Besides the cold wave conditions, north Rajasthan is expected to experience severe cold wave conditions during the next three days. The same weather alert has been issued for Punjab, Haryana and Chandigarh on December 19 and 20, according to the IMD bulletin.
Isolated pockets of Punjab are very likely to experience dense to very dense fog in the morning hours between December 18 and 20, while similar conditions are expected in Haryana and Chandigarh on December 18 and 19, and over north Rajasthan on December 18.
Northeastern states of Meghalaya, Manipur, Mizoram, Nagaland, Tripura and Assam have been forecasted to experience dense fog on December 18 and 19.
Ground frost conditions
Punjab, Haryana, Chandigarh and north Rajasthan will also experience ground frost conditions in their isolated pockets during the morning hours over the next three days, the IMD bulletin said.
According to IMD, a low-pressure area lies over the central parts of southeast Bay of Bengal and adjoining the equatorial Indian ocean with an associated cyclonic circulation. The low-pressure area is likely to move east-northeastwards and become more “marked” in the next 48 hours or by December 19.
Owing to this condition, light to moderate rainfall at a few or multiple regions of the Andaman and Nicobar Islands have been forecast between December 18 and 20. On December 19 and 20, Nicobar Islands is expected to experience heavy rainfall as well, the IMD bulletin said.