The popular hill station of Munnar in Kerala, known as Southern Kashmir, is once again covered in frost with temperatures dropping to sub-zero levels this week. While the rest of the state is reeling under heat, mercury levels in Munnar dropped, with the recorded temperature at Sevenmallay hills dropping to -1 degree Celsius and the neighbouring hill, Letchmi, at 0 degrees Celsius.
With the current dip in temperature, the tourism industry hopes to attract more footfall. â€śCurrently we are enjoying cool and pleasant weather in Munnar, and we hope this weather will attract more tourists here,â€ť Munnar Hotel and Restaurants President VV George told TNM.
Anish P Varghese, who runs hotel Redsparrows in Old Munnar, hopes another cold wave will engulf the place and attract more tourists. â€śWe got bookings for the weekends, and the town sees more tourists during the weekend. We hope that another cold wave attracts more tourists,â€ť he said.
In January this year, the temperature in Munnar had dropped to -4 degrees, with the cold wave gripping the country for nearly 20 days. The dip in temperature covered the hill station in frost, attracting scores of at during the time. The last time, the cold wave experiences right after New Years was explained by several weather experts.
â€śIt is because the polar vortex has weakened and this causes cold air to blow towards our part of the world. Another reason is caused by the western disturbance coming from the North West as a wave towards the East â€“ towards India,â€ť Dr Abhilash S, the Asst Professor at the Department of Atmospheric Sciences in CUSAT then said.
â€śHumidity works like a greenhouse gas. And in the day, you get hit by direct sunlight because it is a cloudless sky,â€ť Abhilash added.
Tamil Nadu weatherman Pradeep John added that it was because of the high pressure which is common during January over the Indian Peninsula that sucked away the moisture content in the air, making it hard to retain humidity.