Delhi lashed by rains, hailstorm; 18 flights diverted

Delhi lashed by rains, hailstorm; 18 flights diverted

Delhi and its four satellite cities--Noida, Gurugram, Ghaziabad and Faridabad were hit by heavy rains and hailstorms on Thursday evening, throwing the civic life out of gear.

The sudden and drastic change of weather led to the diversion of as many as 18 flights at Delhi airport between 6-7 PM. The planes were diverted to Jaipur, Lucknow, Amritsar, Varanasi and Indore as the weather was not suitable for landing.

India Meteorological Department attributes the weather pattern to a fresh spell of western disturbance – a storm that originates in the Mediterranean and impacts the weather all over Asia – that triggered widespread rain and hailstorm in large parts of Western Himalayas and dense fogs in large parts of north India and Gangetic plains.

The residents of Delhi National Capital Region woke up to a cloudy sky, which continued throughout the day. The sky opened up in the evening leading to traffic snarls in several parts of the Delhi and NCR.

People took to the social media to share pictures of the hailstorm. Several Noida localities resemble a hill station after snowfall in the wake of the intense hailstorm.

The rainfall is likely to continue with reduced intensity over north west India on Friday as well. Subsequently, the precipitation is likely to shift eastwards, causing rain, thundershowers and isolated hailstorms over east and northeast India between February 8-10, says the IMD.

Three more western disturbances are set to reach India in the next 10 days causing rainfall and hailstorms in large parts of western, central and peninsular India, it adds.