The city’s lowest temperature soared to an unusual 21.1°C on Wednesday morning — almost nine degrees above normal and the highest since October. Such a temperature reading is usually seen in the summer and monsoon months.
Shivajinagar was the warmest India Meteorological Department (IMD) station in central Maharashtra, Marathwada and Vidarbha in the night intervening Tuesday and Wednesday, followed by Lohegaon. The minimum temperature in most of the other Met stations was below 20°C.
A Met department official told TOI, “Wednesday’s minimum temperature was not only the highest for the winter season till now, but was also the highest since October 2017. Such minimum temperatures are usually witnessed in summer and monsoon seasons. The recent cyclonic storm caused significant moisture incursion and clouding in the state. While the maximum temperature in Pune remained low, between 25-27°C, the minimum remained high.”
December has been warmer than November for the city though it heralds the winter season. Pune’s night temperature has been high over the past few days because of moisture incursion and cloudy skies caused by cyclonic storm Ockhi, which has now become a depression. The system not only caused rain in the city and other places in Maharashtra but also pushed up the winter night temperature significantly.
When the night skies are cloudy, the blanket of clouds prevents the terrestrial radiation from the earth’s surface to escape into the atmosphere, which warms up the night. Conversely, when day skies are cloudy, it prevents solar radiation from reaching the earth’s surface, leading to lower maximum temperature.