NEW DELHI: As cold-wave conditions continued to grip Northwest India, including Delhi-NCR, Punjab, Rajasthan, and Haryana, the India Meteorological Department has issued orange and yellow alerts in most parts of the region.
An orange alert asks authorities concerned to "be prepared" to respond to any emergency situation arising out of weather change while the yellow alert signifies that the weather could change, and hence people should be vigilant.
The IMD has predicted light to moderate rain and a hailstorm with winds gusting up to 50 kilometres per hour that will lash northwest India, next week. Light rain is also expected in Delhi, the weather office said predicting a "partly cloudy sky, moderate to dense fog in the morning with the possibility of very light rain/drizzle towards night".
"An active Western Disturbance is very likely to affect northwest India from January 21 to January 25. Under its influence, rainfall/snowfall is likely to commence over the western Himalayan region in the early hours of January 21 and continue till January 25 with peak activity on January 23-24," the IMD said in a statement.
The weather office further added that a light to moderate hailstorm is likely at isolated places over Jammu, Himachal Pradesh, Uttarakhand, Punjab, Haryana, Chandigarh, Delhi, west Uttar Pradesh and north Rajasthan on January 23 and 24.
IMD has issued orange and yellow alerts in parts of Punjab, Haryana, Rajasthan and Uttar Pradesh as these area are likely to witness severe cold wave. In Punjab, Gurdaspur, Firozpur, Muktsar, Jalandhar, Hoshiarpur and Bathinda are on orange alert.
Districts such as Fazilka, Barnala, Sangrur, Ludhiana and Fatehgarh Sahib are on yellow alert. In Haryana, Sonipat, Jhajjar, Rewari, Sonipat and Hisar are on orange alert, while Ambala, Kurukshetra, Bhiwani and Palwal are on yellow alert. Most parts of Uttar Pradesh are on yellow alert. Meanwhile, the national capital on Wednesday witnessed foggy conditions, with several flights and trains running late due to low visibility.
Several flights scheduled to depart from Delhi's Indira Gandhi International Airport (IGI) were delayed due to fog, informed airport authority on Wednesday. While the Northern Railway informed that six trains were running late due to fog.
Earlier, India Meteorological Department said that two western disturbances in quick succession are likely to affect northwest India on January 18 and 20, as a result, cold-wave">cold wave conditions over northwest India are likely to abate from January 19.
"Cold wave conditions over northwest India likely to abate from January 19. The rainfall/thunderstorm is likely to commence from January 22 and continue till January 25 with peak activity on 23 and 24 January over the plains of Northwest India including Punjab, Haryana, Uttar Pradesh and North Rajasthan," the IMD said.