JANAKPUR/BIRGUNJ, Dec 17: Dipping temperature has started to hit the normal life of people in Tarai. Schools, colleges, public offices stopped operating since Friday due to cold weather. While it was extremely cold on Friday, people had futile wait for the sun throughout Saturday. Parts of Janakpur, Bara, Parsa and Rautahat, among other districts did not receive the adequate warmth of the sun leaving people at unease.
“Cold does bother us every year. This time, it came rather late. However, the weather has been severe,” stated Ingrasan Mukhiya, 50. “I am worried not only about my children but also of my cattle and crops. It's difficult to save them during mid-winter,” added the local farmer.
Due to extreme cold, few people were seen on the streets on Saturday. Some were spotted keeping themselves warm by lighting bonfire. According to Mukhiya, if the temperature dips further, it will be really troublesome for them.
“Some crops cannot tolerate extreme cold or dew. We have to make different arrangement for them. Here, people are basically farmers just like me. So, cold compounded by rain, if any, would be quite disturbing,” he said.
Birgunj market was almost quiet on Saturday. Only few shops, which were showcasing warm clothes and blankets, did business. People termed it as the arrival of cold wave in Madesh.
However, it is not 'cold wave,' according to Min Bahdaru Aryal, meteorologist at the Division of Weather Forecast and Meteorology.
“What tarai has been experiencing now is not cold wave. It is just that the temperature has gone bit down. By tomorrow (Sunday) afternoon, the weather in the tarai will be clear and it will be warm due to sunshine,” he said. “To call it a cold wave, there should be the same pattern of consistent weather for more than 24 hours,” he explained.
On Saturday, low visibility had affected not only people's lives but also the aviation sector. Flights for Saturday were cancelled. According to the authorities at Simara and Janakpur airports, things will improve if weather gets better on Sunday.
On Saturday, the minimum temperature in Janakpur was 13 degrees Celsius and the maximum was 17 degrees Celsius.