North India Gripped by Dense Fog, Disrupting Travel and Lowering Temperatures

New Delhi: A thick blanket of fog has engulfed North India, causing chaos for travelers and residents alike. The Indian Meteorological Department (IMD) issued a red alert for Delhi on Friday, warning of “very dense” fog with visibility dropping as low as 50 meters. The orange and yellow alerts for subsequent days paint a grim picture for New Year’s travel plans.

Travel Headaches: Train and air travel have been heavily impacted. On Thursday, 22 Delhi-bound trains were delayed due to poor visibility, while 134 flights at the Delhi airport faced delays, affecting both domestic and international routes.

Widespread Impact: The dense fog has also shrouded Punjab, Haryana, Rajasthan, Uttar Pradesh, and northwest Madhya Pradesh, disrupting daily life. Schools in Noida and Greater Noida have been closed, and Mathura schools for younger children have delayed their opening times. Most districts in Haryana and Punjab saw a sunless day due to the thick fog.

Coldest Day in Delhi: Thursday marked the coldest day of the season in Delhi, with the maximum temperature dipping to 21.4 degrees Celsius. The adverse weather even forced UP Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath to postpone his visit to Ayodhya.

Pollution Concerns: Despite the fog trapping pollutants, Delhi’s Air Quality Index (AQI) remained in the “very poor” to “severe” category, highlighting the ongoing battle against air pollution.

What’s Next?: IMD predicts dense fog to persist until December 31, urging caution and advising travelers to stay updated on weather reports.

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