NASHIK: Nashikites are experiencing the winter chill thanks to the cold wave from the North. Two weeks after witnessing a dip in temperature at 7.3 degrees Celsius on January 10, Nashik yesterday recorded a sudden dip in temperature level from Sunday’s minimum of 14.8 degrees to 6.6 degrees on Monday. Post midnight, on Tuesday, the mercury in Nashik touched 6.4, while it went down to 4.5 in Niphad.
On Monday, Mahabaleshwar in the state was coldest at 6.5 degrees Celsius. Jalgaon recorded 9.2 and Malegaon was reeling at 9.6 degrees Celsius. As per India Meteorological Department (IMD), the cold wave is likely to sweep Madhya Maharashtra today and tomorrow, while the weather is likely to remain dry for the next two days in Konkan, Goa and Madhya Maharashtra.
The meteorological department has also warned of a hailstorm in North Maharashtra. Nashik’s mercury dropped directly from 14.8 degrees to 6.6 degrees and further to 6.4, while Niphad’s mercury slid from 10 degrees to 5.5 degrees and further to 4.5 degrees celsius in the morning.
Nashikites are currently experiencing extreme cold weather conditions due to the light breeze. For the last two days, the meteorological department had forecast rains and hailstorms in different parts of Maharashtra. After this, dust storms from Pakistan and Gujrat also caused a drop in temperature. More cold spells are expected in the next couple of days. The lowest minimum temperature of this season has been recorded in Nashik district.
As a result, Nashik has been experiencing chilly weather by the sudden drop in mercury. On the other hand, farmers continue to bear the brunt of uncertainties. The declining prices have added to the worries of farmers and grape horticulture rates are also becoming a big concern. The lowest temperature was recorded on these days last year.
Snowfall in the northern territory and cold wave in the neighbouring states has brought down the temperature in the state. During the same period, mercury in Niphad had dropped to 2.4 degrees. Dewdrops were also seen in many areas during this time. Farmers’ worries have increased in Nashik district due to cold weather. In Nashik, like every year, a large number of summer onions have been planted.
Therefore, the increased cold will have a big effect on onion and grape crops. It will also have an adverse effect on grapes in Nashik. At present, the vineyards are getting ready for harvest. If the temperature drops below 6 degrees celsius, the growth of fruits may be affected and they may get cracked, opined an agricultural expert associated with an association of grape growers.
The grape farmers are taking measures like giving water to vineyards through the drip method in the wee hours to maintain the temperature. Some farmers are also following the old traditional method of creating bonfires in the vineyards. The prevailing weather conditions are conducive for crops like onion, wheat and chickpea.
The cold weather conditions may affect the rabi season crop in the district. Wheat, gram, vegetables, onions, grapes are being severely hit by this weather. Farmers are spraying different drugs on crops. On the other hand, due to fog, there is a fear of crop diseases like fungi, tambara, karpa, bhuri, tikka, mawa and tudtude.