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In Uttar Pradesh’s Ghaziabad, a strange, celestial rumour is doing rounds. Some local residents of Sahibabad locality in Ghaziabad district have claimed that a meteorite may have hit the area on Thursday night. According to latest reports, the ‘meteorite’ hit near Sahibabad railway godown. Panic-stricken people called up the police and the fire department. Several onlookers claimed that something had fallen from the sky. White debris around the blaze sparked the speculation of meteorite. The rumour intensified after the fire tenders failed to douse the blaze. Three ball-like celestial bodies fell from the sky, several residents have claimed. So far, no official has confirmed or denied about the strange incident. Some people have claimed that it might be a case of short-circuit due to heavy rains.
Delhi and the adjoining areas received heavy rainfall on Thursday. The India Meteorological Department (IMD) said the Safdarjung Observatory, which provided representative figures for Delhi, recorded 20.4 mm rainfall till 8:30 am. The weather station at Palam gauged 15.3 mm rainfall, Lodhi Road recorded 20.6 mm, Ayanagar 19.1 mm and Ridge 18.6 mm, it added.
The rains led to waterlogging in several areas, which affected traffic movement in the morning hours. Traffic congestion was reported from several areas as vehicles moved bumper to bumper.
Rains over the last two days have brought the mercury down. The city recorded a minimum temperature of 12 degrees Celsius on Friday morning. The maximum temperature is likely to settle at 22 degrees Celsius. More rains are likely during the day, along with a hailstorm, at isolated places, the IMD said. Winds gusting up to 40-50 kilometres per hour are predicted to sweep across the region.
Rains and strong winds over the last two days have improved the city's air quality. At 9:45 am, the overall Air Quality Index (AQI) of Delhi stood at 69, which falls in the satisfactory category.
Earth is no stranger to meteorites. According to the NASA, a meteor is a space rock—or meteoroid—that enters Earth's atmosphere. As the space rock falls toward Earth, the resistance—or drag—of the air on the rock makes it extremely hot. What we see is a "shooting star." That bright streak is not actually the rock, but rather the glowing hot air as the hot rock zips through the atmosphere. Meteor showes occur annually or at regular intervals as the Earth passes through the trail of dusty debris left by a comet. Meteor showers are usually named after a star or constellation that is close to where the meteors appear in the sky, says NASA.
(With agency inputs)