A mother with her child at the Tibet Market in Golmuri on Wednesday. (Bhola Prasad)
If the fog is here, can the freeze be far behind? Weathermen on Wednesday predicted complete onset of winter in the state and crisp plunge in night temperatures by this weekend.
“Severe winter is on the threshold. The climate across Jharkhand will remain dry for the next 72 hours. This will result in further drop in minimum readings,” said a senior forecast expert at the Patna Meteorological Office.
He ruled out possibility of rain because the chart analysis did not indicate formation of any atmospheric circulation over the Bay of Bengal.
Director of Patna Met office A.K. Sen said the westerly wind was blowing over Jharkhand, but it was still weak. “The feeble flow is not resulting in chill. But, we expect the wind pattern to change to north-westerly later this week, which will cause minimum temperatures to plummet. In the next couple of days, readings will be two to three degrees below normal,” he said.
Ranchi is already on the brr radar, with Wednesday witnessing a minimum of 12.2°C, two notches below the average normal. The night temperature in Jamshedpur, however, witnessed a drop of a degree in 48 hours. The local weather office recorded 14°C, one notch below normal.
The minimum also fluctuated between 13°C and 15°C in most parts of the state, including Daltonganj, Bokaro, Dhanbad, Koderma, Hazaribagh, Latehar, Simdega and Seraikela-Kharsawan.
Met statistics revealed that last year temperatures in most places also fluctuated between 13°C and 15°C during this time of the season. In Ranchi, it was around 11°C.
Director of Regional Meteorological Centre at Alipore, Calcutta, G.C. Debnath said that there was no sign of clouds. “The sky is likely to remain clear for at least the next 72 hours, which will drag down night readings further,” he reiterated.
The Met centre in its 72-hour forecast has predicted a fall in temperature at various places, including Ranchi, Jamshedpur, Hazaribagh, Deoghar and the Chotanagpur plateau region.
Met expert T.N. Jha too said that a change in the wind pattern was necessary for complete onset of winter.
“The Singhbhum, Ranchi and Hazaribagh regions generally witnesses severe cold in December. The minimum in Ranchi has already touched 12°C, while Jamshedpur saw 13.4°C on November 13. Once the north wind arrives, temperatures will witness a free fall,” he added.