| Residents arrange for a bonfire on Monday. Picture by Jai Prakash |
A hidden sun and winds denied residents any relief from the damp chill on Monday following rain at the end of last week. The minimum temperature hovered around 10ºC in the city.
The westerly wind was blowing around 10kmph against the normal speed of 6kmph at this time of the year.
Niraj Sinha, a central government employee, said: “I was expecting a clear sky today (Monday) as the clouds had started clearing up on Sunday afternoon but the morning fog gave way to a hazy sky, making it tough for people like us who had to attend office.”
Homemaker Sudha Singh, whose 11-year-old son is a student of Class IV, had a different take.
“The district administration hastily decided to extend vacation for the junior classes by two days till January 14 but seeing today’s (Monday’s) weather, I feel the administration should take a fresh look at the conditions before allowing the schools to reopen from January 15,” she said.
Elaborating on the reasons behind the hazy sky over Patna and most parts of north Bihar districts, India Meteorological Department, Patna, director Ashish Sen said: “A thick layer of moisture, trapped at a height between 500m and 1,500m from the earth’s surface, is responsible for this condition. It is not a cloud, rather a thick layer of haze not allowing the sun to shine over the city.”
The moisture has been left as a residue by the weather system that had brought rainfall at a few places in the state, including the capital, during the past weekend.
Sen said the moisture level was likely to clear off by Tuesday morning. “There would be fog in the morning but the sun is likely to be visible in most parts of the state by 11am on Tuesday,” he said, adding: “Once the haze clears, it may lead to drop in the minimum temperature across the state.”
The minimum temperature level, hovering around 10ºC in the capital and around 8ºC in the districts of north Bihar on Monday, might drop by a couple of degrees Celsius after the haze lifts.
The Met department, however, could not forecast clear weather from the middle of the present week.
“One more stream of western disturbance, hovering over Uttarakhand at present, may affect the state’s weather from January 15 or 16. The exact picture about the advancement of the system would be clear by Tuesday but if it reaches Bihar, parts of its northwestern districts and the capital may receive some rain,” Sen said.