Showers hit Punjab, more likely on Monday

Light rainfall was recorded across Punjab on Sunday under the influence of a fresh western disturbance, according to India Meteorological Department.

Even hailstorm was witnessed in parts of Malwa region, including Bathinda, Muktsar, Faridkot, Ferozepur, Barnala, Sangrur and Ludhiana districts.

According to data available till 5:30pm, 13mm rain was recorded in Amritsar, 1mm in Patiala and just 0.6mm in Ludhiana.

More rain can be expected on Monday, following which dry weather is likely to return.

“The rain was the result of a feeble western disturbance. There had been no western disturbance in the region after monsoon ended. Rain will continue on Monday, but the intensity will be lower than that on Sunday,” said IMD regional director Surender Paul.

Farmers fear crop damage

“Weather is still cloudy and even mild rainfall can cause damage to the freshly sown wheat crop,” said Ranjinder Singh, a farmer from Chaina village in Faridkot.

Dr Jaswinder Singh Brar, plant protection officer, Moga, said rain may pose a challenge to farmers still resorting to stubble burning, but those who used crop residue management machines will benefit.

“Crop residue ploughed back into the field will work as a cover and keep the field moist and benefit germination process. However, wheat sown in the last five days on fields where paddy straw was burnt is likely to get damaged as mild rainfall will harden the surface and affect germination,” he said.

Be cautious of Covid, say experts

In Amritsar, showers brought minimum temperature down to 13°C in the afternoon.

With mercury taking a plunge, health experts have asked people to be more cautious to prevent a sudden spike in Covid-19 cases.

“The survival rate of coronavirus on substances will increase in lower temperatures, increasing the chances of people getting infected,” said Dr Naveen Pandhi of the chest and TB department at Government Medical College and Hospital, Amritsar.

“The drop in mercury can lead to more cases of cough, cold and chest infections, which can lead to further complications among Covid-19 patients,” said Dr Anita Chauhan, epidemiologist, Faridkot.

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