Normal life in tribal dominated Kandhamal district was severely hit as the mercury level fell to minus 0.5 degree Celsius at Daringbadi and the entire region is swept by cold wave since three days, officials said on Thursday.
The people in Phulbani, Daringbadi, Khajuripada, Raikia, Balliguda, Kotagarh, Tumudibandha areas fear to come out of their houses after sunset due to severe cold.
The mercury level dropped to minus 0.5 degree Celsius at Daringbadi today at 5.30 AM which is said to be the lowest temperature of the season in the entire state of Odisha, said Ajeet Kumar Sahu, local Meteorological Observatory set up by the Berhampur University.
On Wednesday, the temperature was 3 degree Celsius and day before yesterday it was 8 degree Celsius, Sahu said, adding that the lowest temperature recorded today at district headquarters town of Phulbani at 5.30 AM is minus 5 degree Celsius.
Apart from Daringbadi, Kotagarh, Tyumudibandha and Balliguda recorded 3.5, 4.5 and 4 degree Celsius respectively.
Intense cold wave has compounded the woes of homeless and poor people in the district. They prefer to remain round the clock with fire in their houses to get rid of this severe cold and do not dare to step out from houses before 11 am and after 7 pm all over the district, officials said.
Since the moisture content in the climate is very low, snow fall is yet to be reported from remote areas of Kandhamal. However, wild birds in forest and fishes in the tanks and nullahs are found floating dead due to the severe cold in many areas.
Banana cultivation in Balliguda sub-division and Rabi crop and vegetable cultivation in these areas has been immensely affected due to cold wave, Tirthabasi Kanhar a tribal Banana grower of Balliguda said.