Heavy rains, hailstorm wreak havoc in Delhi; traffic congestion, waterlogging disrupt normal life

New Delhi: Heavy rains pounded the national capital on Thursday evening, resulting in water logging, traffic congestion and brief suspension of flight operations at the Delhi airport.

Hailstorm was also reported in some parts of Delhi, the weather office said. The Regional Meteorological Centre of the IMD said there was a low pressure area over Haryana that resulted in heavy rains over the National Capital Region.

Mahesh Palawat, Vice-President (Meteorology and Climate Change), said there was a cyclonic circulation over Punjab and Haryana. High humidity coupled with temperatures that have been rising since the last two days led to the formation of clouds, a normal phenomenon in pre-monsoon and post-monsoon time.

According to the Meteorological Department, the maximum temperature recorded at 5.30 pm was 34.8 degrees Celsius, a notch above the normal, and the minimum was 23.8 degrees Celsius, two notches above the normal.

Humidity levels oscillated between 83 and 55 per cent. The IMD said the Safdurjung observatory recorded 35.2 millimetres rain while the Palam observatory saw 20 millimetres. The RMC termed the rainfall "moderate".

The spell that lasted for nearly two hours saw water logging in several parts of the city. The Traffic Police reported congestion and water logging at Moolchand underpass, Tilak Bridge, Hyatt Hotel, Bhikaji Cama Place, MB road, IGNOU road and Sainik farms.

Flight operations at the Delhi Airport were suspended for 24 minutes due to extremely heavy rains accompanied by strong winds in the evening, senior airport officials said.

Four flights were diverted from the airport during this period, they said.

Airlines such as Vistara and SpiceJet warned their passengers on Twitter that due to the bad weather in Delhi, their flights might get affected.

"Runway operation was suspended between 7.56 pm and 8.20 pm on Thursday due to heavy rains in Delhi. Four flights were diverted during this period," the officials said.

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