Since recording 11.4 C as the lowest temperature on December 27, the mercury now hovers at 21 , and may go up by another two, weathermen predict 

If that fleeting chill in the air a week ago gave you any ideas of cosily covering up for the winter, the weathermen's predictions will banish them now. Less than a week after the city observed the lowest temperature of the decade -- 11.4 C on December 27 -- the winds have changed. The mercury has risen up by almost 9 C since then, weather officials say. 

Business dips: Tibetans selling woollens on Mumbai streets. File pic

Given the statistics, the New Year bodes a warmer climate this winter. On January 1, the highest and lowest temperatures recorded by the meteorological department were higher by around 3 than those in the last two years (see box). For instance, in January 1, 2011 the minimum temperature recorded by Santacruz was 12.8 C. The same day this year, the minimum temperature was 20.8 C. The maximum temperatures of the day have also shot up. 

"We are expecting the temperature to further go up by one or two degrees Celsius in the next 24 hours," said a meteorological official. "The normal temperature is between 17 and 18 C. A rise of 2 degrees is not much, but almost normal. However, no significant analysis could be drawn depending on the temperature marked on the first day in the new year," said V K Rajeev, director of weather forecast at the India Meteorological Department (IMD), Mumbai.