Delhi-National Capital Region witnessed heavy downpour on Thursday evening which led to a dip in temperatures to 17 degrees Celsius. Thunderstorms and hail were also reported from some parts, along with heavy rains in the national capital. The change in weather has also brought with it a respite for the locals of Delhi-NCR, as the Air Quality Index (AQI) is expected to come down from 'severe' to 'very poor' category.
As per the website of Air Quality Early Warning System for Delhi, the air quality is likely to improve significantly from 'severe' to lower end of 'very poor' category, owing to the rain and strong winds.
"The air quality is likely to improve further on Friday to moderate category," it said.
Earlier in the day, the national capital's air quality turned to the 'severe' category, with the overall AQI at 407.
Under the influence of a western disturbance, the national capital witnessed rain and strong winds for nearly two hours on Thursday evening.
"Widespread rainfall with isolated heavy rainfall/snow accompanied with thunderstorm/hailstorm is very likely over the Western Himalayan region during the next 48 hours," a weather bulletin on IMD's website said.
"Fairly widespread to widespread rains with isolated heavy rainfall accompanied with thunderstorm/hailstorm is also very likely over Punjab, Haryana, Chandigarh, Delhi and West Uttar Pradesh during the same period," the bulletin added.
The Met department maintained that the national capital might witness heavy rains and thunderstorms on Friday as well.
Several flights were diverted from Delhi's IGI Airport following the heavy downpour. Operations at the airport had to be briefly suspended. Air India and Vistara were among the carriers whose services were affected.
Passengers at the Delhi Airport were advised to contact individual airlines for further information.
Meanwhile, Delhiites took to Twitter and posted videos of heavy rains and lightning across the North Capital Region.