Cold claims 21 more lives in north India; death toll reaches 129 in UP

Last Updated: Sat, Jan 05, 2013 06:07 hrs

New Delhi: Intense cold claimed 21 more lives in north India as temperatures plummeted to sub-zero levels at many places in the region. The death toll this winter has reached to 129 in Uttar Pradesh.

Icy north winds brought down the temperature in Delhi to the season's lowest of 2.7 degrees Celsius on Friday.

The fog in the early morning hours affected road, rail and air traffic in the national capital, affecting schedules of around 50 flights.

The maximum temperature on Thursday also rose to 12.7 degree Celsius, which is eight degrees below normal and the minimum was recorded at 4.4 degree Celsius that is three degrees below normal.

The Delhi Government has ordered all schools under it to remain closed until January 12.

The biting cold and icy winds have aggravated the agony of several homeless people, who are living on the streets and warmed themselves by sitting around the bonfire.

Traffic was snarling on the roads due to poor visibility in wake of the dense fog, which had enveloped New Delhi.

Eight people were killed due to the bone chilling cold in Punjab, Haryana and Chandigarh where the mercury dipped three notches below normal in most places.

Cold wave and dense fog disrupted normal life across Uttar Pradesh with the people preferring to stay at their homes. The death toll in the state during this season has gone up to 129.

An unabated cold wave swept through the Kashmir Valley as minimum temperatures plunged further with Srinagar witnessing the coldest night of the season at minus 4.3 degrees Celsius.

Heavy snowfall in Jammu and Kashmir blocked the historical Mughal Road, an arterial road connecting several districts of the state. Tourists here are facing the wrath of dipping mercury.

"When we came here, we came to know that the road ahead is closed due to snow. We want that the government here must put up a system to remove the snow immediately and more and more people should be employed to clear the snow. This will also facilitate the tourists who are on their way to Srinagar," said Habib, a tourist in Rajouri. 

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