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Mercury plummets in rain & snow
- White carpet for zigzag road

Feb. 14: The mercury dipped across north Bengal today because of a light rainfall caused by western disturbance, while snowfall brought down the temperature in Sikkim.

Meteorologists said north Bengal and Sikkim would be in the grip of a cold snap till Sunday.

A severe western disturbance is passing through sub-Himalayan Bengal and Sikkim. The western disturbance passes in waves (crests and troughs) and right now a westerly trough with low pressure is hovering over the region. This is leading to cold weather. Such weather is likely to remain till Sunday. There will be light rainfall in some areas and snowfall in higher altitudes, said G.N. Raha, the meteorologist posted at the India Meteorological Department office in Gangtok.

The upper reaches of Sikkim received snowfall since this morning, particularly the East district. It started snowing in north Sikkim yesterday. Snowfall was also reported on the way to Chhangu Lake and Nathu-la, much to the delight of tourists who jumped off their vehicles and enjoyed playing in the snow.

Sumit Ghosh, a tourist from Malda, said: I was very excited to see snow for the first time here in Sikkim. It was freezing, but I enjoyed a yak ride at ChhanguLake.

In most areas in Sikkim, the temperature dipped below normal. Snowfall up to three feet was recorded in the hilly terrain.

The Sikkim capital today recorded a temperature of eight degrees Celsius, which is five degrees below the normal. There was also light rainfall in the morning.

In the plains, light rainfall was reported throughout north Bengal. The rain brought down the maximum temperature in all places in the region.

In Jalpaiguri, the maximum temperature dipped to 16 degree Celsius, which, IMD sources said, is 10 degrees below the normal temperature.

In Siliguri and Cooch Behar, too, the temperature dipped to 15 degrees Celsius, while it came down to around four degrees Celsius in Darjeeling.

With the temperature coming down and the sky remaining overcast during the day, most tourists came out on the streets in the Darjeeling hills and Sikkim to enjoy the weather.