Heavy rains lash Delhi, season’s wettest day (Second Lead)

July 26th, 2011 - 9:40 pm ICT by IANS  

New Delhi, July 26 (IANS) After days of playing hide and seek, the skies opened up in the national capital Tuesday with heavy rains lashing most parts of the city, bringing much-needed relief from the muggy weather. It was the wettest day of the monsoon season so far after more than a month.

The city received 58.2 mm of rainfall in a span of nine hours. The Met Office has forecast more rains Wednesday.

“The previous occasion which saw a similar downpour was June 15 when the city received 39.2 mm of rainfall,” an official of the India Meteorological department (IMD) said.

The heavy rains led to water-logging and traffic jams on some of the city’s major roads. In some areas, children had to wade through ankle-deep water to reach their homes after school.

Water collected in many of the underpasses around the city, adding to the traffic problem.

Traffic jams were reported from Pragati Maidan - the trade fair exhibition ground in New Delhi - the Ring Road near the Safdarjung Hospital in south Delhi, Sarai Kale Khan in east Delhi and roads leading to the upscale commercial hub Connaught Place in New Delhi area.

“I was stuck in a jam on a side road near my office for more than half an hour as a part of the road was completely flooded,” said Sanket Sinha, a businessman from south Delhi.

Similar was the case at the Minto Bridge underpass near Connaught Place, where vehicles queued up in an effort to get through the shallowest stretch of water.

“My scooter couldn’t get through as water entered the exhaust pipe and I got stuck on the road for about an hour,” said Ramesh Bhatia, a shopkeeper in the old quarters of the city.

The India Meteorological Department (IMD) said: “Heavy rains were recorded in the northern, southern, eastern and central parts of the city while parts of west Delhi either remained dry or received slight drizzle.”

The downpour had no effect on the day’s maximum temperature which was recorded two notches above average at 35.6 degrees Celsius while the minimum was a notch below average at 25.6 degrees Celsius.

The humidity was recorded on the higher side with the maximum settling at 97 percent and the minimum at 66 percent.

The IMD has forecast more rains Wednesday and the maximum and minimum temperature around 33 and 26 degrees Celsius.

The city has received a total of 192.2 mm of rainfall this season, added the IMD.

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