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Delhi-NCR hit by sudden dust storm, rain; flights grounded

Delhi-NCR hit by sudden dust storm, rain; flights grounded

Earlier this week, the Delhi government chose to close all evening schools on Tuesday following the weather department's warning about heavy rains and thunderstorm.

Thunderstorm and dust storm with wind speeds of up to 70 km per hour are "very likely" in 26 districts of Uttar Pradesh on Monday, the weather office warned on Sunday. No casualty or injury was reported in the incidents, the officer said. At bus stops in south Delhi, people were seen huddling together to protect themselves as branches of overhead trees broke.

Flight operations at Delhi's Indira Gandhi International Airport have been put on hold, news agency ANI reported. The storm interrupts CM Arvind Kejriwal's programme in Delhi's IP Extension. The India Meteorological Department (IMD) has earlier predicted that there is a possibility of thunderstorm accompanied with a squall and gusty wind will hit states across the country on Sunday.

With this, dust storm, and thunderstorm are expected over Delhi and its adjoining areas of Noida, Gurugram, Ghaziabad, Faridabad during the evening hours of today. Thunderstorm over northern hill-states and its effect in the plains is due to a western disturbance.

State deputy chief minister (Home) N China Rajappa, while condoling the deaths of people in lightning strikes, asked the respective district authorities to take necessary precautionary measures as per the warnings issued by the Disaster Management Department.

In Andhra Pradesh, nine persons were killed in lightning strikes.

Metro services, too, were affected.

.

The deaths came just 10 days after a sandstorm left more than 130 dead in the same region.

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# 07:03 PM: Dust storm hits Kanpur. Operations on the Blue, Violet and Magenta lines continued to remain affected. However, the movement has now resumed.

Dark storm clouds gathered over the capital, battering the city with high winds.

Vistara said its Delhi-bound flights from Srinagar, Lucknow, Bhubaneswar, Mumbai and Goa were diverted.

But the sky turned cloudy around 4:30pm and gusty winds started sweeping the city soon after.

In Sarita Vihar area in southeast Delhi, a tin sheet blown off a rooftop by strong wind hit pedestrian Rohit, 22, injuring him seriously. Visuals from Delhi's Vijay Chowk. "The service normalised at 5:40 pm", the DMRC said in a statement.

At least 18 people were killed by hail and thunderstorms that brought down walls, trees and power pylons in Uttar Pradesh state, emergency officials said.

Yesterday, the maximum settled at a whopping 43.2 degrees Celsius at the Palam observatory with the minimums today being recorded at 28.8 degrees, both three degrees above the normal levels.


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