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Sub-10 chill to get worse across towns

Season's first cold wave grips northern pockets of state, including Bokaro & Daltonganj

WARM-UP: People gather around a bonfire to beat the chill in Dhanbad on Tuesday night. The coal town's minimum temperature on Wednesday was 9.8°C. Picture by Shabbir Hussain

Jamshedpur: Winter is suddenly at full throttle in the state, with weathermen declaring cold wave conditions in isolated pockets in the north.

The mercury took an unexpected plunge on Wednesday, pushing minimum temperatures four to five notches below normal in places like Bokaro and Daltonganj while most other towns and cities experienced sub-10 chill. The Celsius will continue to slide till the weekend, warned weathermen.

Daltonganj shivered at its season's lowest of 5.7°C, five notches below normal and a drop of four degrees in 24 hours. Minimum readings hovered around 6°C in north-western parts of the state like Garhwa, Chatra and Latehar and in Santhal Pargana districts of Dumka and Pakur (in the north-east), where the cold wave prevailed.

The temperature in Bokaro was 7.2°C, four notches below normal and a drop of more than two degrees in 24 hours. Kanke, on the outskirts of Ranchi, recorded 7.2°C and the state capital was no less cold at 8.4°C, two notches below normal.

Besides Ranchi, several other places such as Jamshedpur, Hazaribagh, Dhanbad, Koderma and Giridih huddled under sub-10 chill. The steel city recorded 9.6°C, two notches below normal.

Met officials said the biting cold would continue for another couple of days.

"The chill has intensified owing to a strong flow of dry north-westerly winds. Snowfall and cold wave in north India have impacted Jharkhand's weather," said a senior analyst at Patna Meteorological Centre.

The weatherman maintained that December 25 to January 10 was always "peak winter" in Jharkhand. "This is the first cold wave of the season," he added.

Clear skies, characteristic of winter, and low humidity resulted in the Celsius plunge, especially in northern parts of the state.

"The entire state is in the grip of the North Wind, which will drag down minimum temperatures further in the next 24 hours. The chill has intensified because of the strong and dry current," said Upendra Srivastava of Ranchi Meteorological Centre.

Wednesday's satellite pictures indicated a cyclonic circulation over sub-Himalayan Bengal and adjoining west Assam, lying between 2.1km and 3.6km above the mean sea level. Two other cyclonic circulations, which were hovering over eastern Uttar Pradesh and eastern Bangladesh, have become weak.

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