Intense cold wave leaves people shivering across north India

Last Updated: Sat, Jan 05, 2013 08:00 hrs

People got no respite from biting cold; as mercury dipped below normal across north India, further disrupting rail and air services.

A thick blanket of fog accompanied by icy cold windows forced people to stay within the confines of their homes.

Owing to poor visibility, people adopted caution while driving their vehicles.

Dense fog played spoilsport and delayed trains for over several hours, causing trouble to the passengers, who had huddled at railway stations.

"My train is about four to four and a half hours late," said Mahesh, a stranded passenger told reporters on Saturday (January 05).

Several people were seen sipping hot tea at the roadside stalls as they tried to fight the dipping temperature.

According to media reports, about 60 flights were delayed and 38 were cancelled due to the intense cold wave.

Disruption due to fog has become a routine in northern India.

The thick blanket of fog enveloping India's northern Agra city did not deter tourists, who have been pouring in large numbers to catch a glimpse of the Taj Mahal.

"Though it's foggy, we still decided to come back and see it. Just seeing the silhouette and not seeing the detailing, just seeing the size and monstrosity of the beauty from the clouds is really haunting, but beautiful. It is really amazing," said Chris, a tourist from Australia.

The tourists were wrapped in woollen clothes as they tried to beat the plummeting temperatures.

In Lucknow, people were seen sitting around a bonfire and warming themselves, as they tried to beat the spine- chilling cold.

The plight of the people is aggravated as the state authorities have not made adequate arrangements for the poor people to fight the cold.

"Earlier, the government would have bonfires at almost every place to keep us warm. Nowadays, the government is not making such provisions for us. A poor man who would sleep by the roadside would benefit earlier, but now there is a lot of problem," said Munna, a local.

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. (ANI)

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