The minimum temperature in the city increased by two notches on Monday, but citizens shivered throughout the day.
There was hardly any sunlight. The maximum temperature dropped 13 degrees below normal under the influence of extreme day cold condition.
Taking the weather into count, the administration announced that all secondary and higher secondary schools across the state would remain closed till January 9. The decision on reopening the institutions would hinge on the conditions on Wednesday.
At home or away, people covered themselves with woollens from head to toe. Several professionals reached office late because of the biting cold. Even the chief minister’s janata durbar started at 11.10pm, forty minutes behind the schedule.
The officials and the complainants had a tough time at 1 Aney Marg — the venue of the janata durbar — because of the extreme day cold condition. Taking their plight into count, the chief minister’s secretariat made arrangements for bonfire.
Sudama Singh, a complainant from Buxar district, said: “I was worried about what would happen if no arrangements were made at the durbar to beat the cold. I came just with a shawl. When I saw the bonfires, I was relieved.”
Yet, Singh frequently sipped tea. So did the others present at the durbar, including chief minister Nitish Kumar.
The cuppa was not enough to beat the cold, though. Nitish later asked one of his security guards to place a bonfire near his chair.
A 70-year-old woman from Nalanda district Nur Jahan Khatun fainted at the durbar because of cold. She was brought near a bonfire and her legs were rubbed for some time. But she remained unconscious. After a while, a wheel chair was brought and she was rushed to Gardiner hospital near the Income Tax roundabout.
Like Khatun, several elderly persons are suffering from different ailments because of the extreme cold condition. Dr Rajiv Ranjan of Patna Medical College and Hospital said: “There has been an increase in the inflow of patients suffering from myocardial infarction (commonly called heart attack) at the hospital. Most heart attacks are caused by a blood clot that blocks one of the coronary arteries. The blockage of coronary arteries is common in winter.”
He advised patients suffering from high or low blood pressure (BP) to get their BP checked regularly. “Fluctuating weather can have serious effect on such patients,” he said.
Dr Ranjan also noticed a spurt in cough and cold, chest infection and respiratory infection because of the cold weather.
Dr P.K. Verma of Nalanda Medical College and Hospital echoed Dr Ranjan. A doctor at the medicine department, he said: “We are getting more cases of chest infection these days. Cases of bronchial asthma have started coming in. We are also getting several patients of hypertension and diabetes.”
Dr Diwakar Tejaswi, one of the noted physicians of the state capital, said: “Mostly, children are suffering from cough and cold. Many people are also coming with cardiac pain and blood pressure problem.”