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off-beat umbrella:A pedestrian uses his bamboo basket to shield himself from the rain in Saidapet in Chennai on Sunday.
CHENNAI/TAMBARAM: The city experienced intermittent showers on Sunday bringing down the temperature significantly in the evening. Despite it being a holiday, vehicular traffic was low and heavy, moisture-laden clouds ushered in darkness around 5 p.m. itself. Meteorological Department officials said that Meenambakkam observatory recorded 21.4mm of rain while Nungambakkam observatory recorded 23.6mm for the 12-hour period ending 8.30 p.m. on Sunday. Gusty winds and heavy spells of rain are forecast for Monday.
More than 200 passengers were stranded at Chennai airport following cancellation of two flights bound for Port Blair. The flights operated by private airliner Kingfisher were cancelled due to heavy rains and strong winds at the destination.
The first flight, with 117 passengers, took off from Chennai around 4.50 a.m. but could not land at Port Blair and had to return to Chennai. The second flight, scheduled to leave Chennai with 96 other passengers, did not take off due to continued inclement weather in Port Blair.
As passengers had already boarded the aircraft before the Air Traffic Control received information about the weather conditions, more than 200 passengers, who were scheduled to reach Port Blair, picked up an argument with the officials of the private airliner.
The authorities gave assurances that passengers would be provided accommodation and said they would be flown to Port Blair once weather conditions become normal.
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