A couple braves the Friday chill with woollens at Jubilee Park in Jamshedpur. (Animesh Sengupta)
The flip-flop season of winter, which arrived late due to a prolonged monsoon stretch, and has raised and dropped the mercury at will, will stay for longer, till the second week of February.
Weathermen have signalled a slightly extended winter, naming February 10 as the tentative date of withdrawal. Normally, winter leaves the state by January-end — people comment on the changing season right after Makar Sankranti — and definitely by the first week of February. The Met office makes the chilly adieu official when minimum readings rise over 13°C for a consistent number of days.
This time, the season will linger for some more days than normal.
“The satellite study and chart analysis suggested winter would continue for almost three weeks more in Jharkhand. The favourable wind pattern will dominate for quite some time,” said A.K. Sen, director of Patna Meteorological Centre.
A senior weather analyst at Patna said both Jharkhand and neighbouring Bihar were under the influence of a high-pressure belt that would prolong winter.
Moreover, he said that a couple of western disturbances were expected to pass through the northern part of the country, which would influence Jharkhand’s chill.
“Normally, winter lasts till the end of January in Jharkhand. It starts showing signs of withdrawal from the third week. But, so far this year we don't see any signs of withdrawal,” said the weather analyst.
Jharkhand, which is currently in the grip of north-westerly winds resulting in the chill, will feel the change in a week.
That’s when the winds will start playing their merry game.
“The wind pattern will first change from north-westerly to westerly, but the chill will still hold ground then. But after that, the pattern will change to easterly, moisture-laden winds from the sea, which will cause the mercury to rise,” said a veteran weatherman.
Weathermen at the Regional Meteorological Centre at Alipore, Calcutta, confirmed a longer winter for Jharkhand.
“Weather will stay dry and cold with favourable wind pattern dominating Jharkhand in the next one week,” said a duty officer at Calcutta meteorological centre based on inputs of long-range forecast.
Right now, Met data reveals minimum temperatures across most parts of the state are hovering between 10 and 12 degrees Celsius.
Ranchi on Friday recorded a minimum reading of 11.1°C, normal for this time of the season, while Kanke was colder at 9.5°C. Jamshedpur clocked 12.9°C. Dhanbad, Daltonganj and Simdega were a tad warmer, recording above 13°C.
Hazaribagh, Ramgarh, Latehar, Gumla and Koderma, by and large, recorded minimum readings between 10-12 degrees. Ghatshila, Chaibasa and Chandil as well as Bokaro were colder — recording around 10°C.