New Delhi: Delhi witnessed a cold day on Sunday with the maximum temperature settling seven notches below normal at 14.6 degrees Celsius, a meteorological department official said.

The minimum temperature settled at 7.4 degrees Celsius, normal for this time of the year and the humidity oscillated from 100-78 per cent, according to the weather official.

The air quality index (AQI) in Delhi was in the 'very poor' category at 332 at 4 pm, a slight improvement from the 'severe' category a day ago due to high wind speed, according to the Central Pollution Control Board data.

Palam observatory recorded a visibility of 50 metres while it was 150 metres at Safdarjung, the Met department official said.

The weather department has forecast mainly clear skies on Monday with severe cold conditions at several places and moderate to dense fog in the morning.

The maximum and minimum temperatures would be around 15 degrees Celsius and 7 degrees Celsius respectively, the official said.

The wind speed is likely to drop by Wednesday with forecast of dense fog, due to which the air quality would dip, the official said.

The temperature is likely to fall to 5 degrees Celsius by Thursday, the official added.

"Low temperature will continue over north India to keep dense fog for next two days. However, slight relief in air quality will last only for next 24 hours and then wind speed is forecast to slow down by the evening of December 23 and a sharp deterioration in AQI is predicted to higher end of 'very poor' category," government air quality monitoring and forecasting agency SAFAR said.

"Some regions like Jahagirpuri, Vinobapuri, Sahibabad, and GT Road will enter in 'severe' categories by evening of December 24. But the current flip flop will continue and again some improvement in AQI is likely on December 25 and December 26," it said.

An AQI between 0 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'.

This story has been published from a wire agency feed without modifications to the text. Only the headline has been changed.

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