New Delhi: The dense fog and cold wave that has gripped Delhi for the past few days have severely affected flight operations at the Indira Gandhi International Airport. On Sunday, many flights were delayed, diverted, or canceled due to poor visibility and lack of parking space at the airport.
According to airport sources, as many as seven flights were diverted to Jaipur, and one flight was diverted to Mumbai between 4.30 am and 7.30 am on Sunday. Several passengers who had boarded their flights were stuck inside the aircraft for hours as they could not take off due to the low visibility. Some passengers who had landed at the airport also faced inconvenience as they had to wait for almost two hours on the runway before they could deboard, as there was no parking space available.
Akasa Air, one of the airlines affected by the weather conditions, posted a message on its social media platform ‘X’, informing its customers about the schedule changes for flights to and from Delhi, Chennai, Varanasi, Bagdogra, and Lucknow. The airline also advised its customers to check their flight status before leaving for the airport and assured them that its teams were working continuously to assist them.
Meanwhile, Delhi recorded its coldest day of the season on Sunday, with the minimum temperature dropping to 3.5 degrees Celsius at the Safdarjung observatory, which is considered the official reading for the city. The minimum temperature in the RK Puram area was even lower at 7 degrees Celsius. The India Meteorological Department (IMD) said that the cold wave and dense fog conditions were likely to continue for the next few days.
The harsh weather also affected the lives of the homeless people in the city, who sought shelter at the government-run night shelters. The night shelters provide food, beds, blankets, and hot water to the people in need of refuge. However, some of the night shelters were also reported to be overcrowded and lacking in basic amenities.