Cloudy weather prevailed in Delhi on Wednesday while forecasters predicted a few sporadic spells of light rain in the next four to five days, which will keep the air clean and temperatures within comfortable levels.
The Safdarjung Observatory, Delhi's primary weather station, recorded a minimum temperature of 23.8 degrees Celsius on Wednesday morning. The maximum temperature settled at 34 degrees Celsius.
The 24-hour average air quality index (AQI) stood at 211 (poor) at 4 pm.
An AQI between zero and 50 is considered "good", 51 and 100 "satisfactory", 101 and 200 "moderate", 201 and 300 "poor", 301 and 400 "very poor", and 401 and 500 "severe".
According to the India Meteorological Department (IMD), a low-pressure area lies over the west-central Bay of Bengal.
A trough runs from the cyclonic circulation associated with the low-pressure area to northwest Uttar Pradesh at lower tropospheric levels, the IMD said.
Mahesh Palawat, vice president (meteorology and climate change), Skymet Weather, said the weather system could lead to rains in Delhi-NCR between October 5-10.
The IMD forecast showed generally cloudy weather in the capital and a few spells of light rain on October 10-11. The change in wind direction to easterly will protect the capital from the effects of stubble burning in Haryana and Punjab and favorable wind speed and precipitation will wash away pollutants, Palawat said.
Dr. Vijay Kumar Soni, a scientist at the IMD and part of the Centre's sub-committee for GRAP, said the air quality is likely to improve to the moderate category by Thursday.
"We expect light rains and favorable wind direction and speed over the next three to four days in Delhi-NCR which will help improve air quality," he said.
(Inputs from PTI)