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Indian Heatwave Adds To Corona-Cyclone Woes


Scores of  Indian cities are gripped by a merciless heat wave  with maximum temperature shooring past the 45 degree Celsius on Friday, with no respite in sight.
Heat wave conditions gripped Palam and Lodhi Road in Delhi with the two weather stations recording maximum temperatures of 45.4 degrees C and 44.4 degrees C respectively, five degrees above normal. 
The Safdarjung weather station also recorded the highest maximum temperature for the season at 43.8 degrees C, four degrees above normal.
“We cannot expect any relief from hot weather in northwest India till May 27. The maximum temperature will range from 42 to 45 degrees C. Around May 29, a western disturbance is likely to cause clouding,” said Kuldeep Shrivastava, head, regional weather forecasting centre, Delhi.
 “The dry hot north-westerly winds and clear skies are leading to maximum temperatures peaking.”  
The India Meteorological Department (IMD), in its latest bulletin, said the highest maximum temperature was recorded at 46 degrees C in coastal Andhra Pradesh and Yanam while the highest maximum temperature on Friday was recorded at Churu in west Rajasthan at 46.2 degrees C.
Heat wave conditions are very likely over Rajasthan and West Madhya Pradesh during the next five days with severe heat waves in some pockets over West Rajasthan during the next 24 hours.
 Heat wave conditions are likely over parts of peninsular India and Vidarbha during next three or four days; over East Madhya Pradesh and Chhattisgarh after 24 hours and over southern parts of Uttar Pradesh after 48 hours. 
The worst health impacts of the heat wave will be borne by migrant workers who are headed home on foot or by other transport, experts said.
According to National Disaster Management Authority, around 2.3 million migrant workers have travelled by train between May 12 and May 21, the data for those walking back or travelling in buses cannot be estimated said, Pawan Kumar Singh, joint advisor, national disaster management authority (NDMA). 
Many workers are also walking back to their villages from train stations.
“They are very vulnerable to heat strokes if they are walking. They will have to drink a lot of water and take rest frequently. They should choose cooler parts of the day to walk like mornings and evenings. It is best to quarantine them when they reach their villages and migrants should wear masks and wash their hands frequently to prevent infection. Even in Gujarat, we initially saw migrants walking back to nearby villages from Ahmedabad but now they are walking very large distances,” said Dilip Mavlankar, Gandhinagar’s Indian Institute of Public Health director.
Priya Deshingkar, Professor of Migration and Development, University of Sussex, on Friday in a conference organised by Centre for Science and Environment on the current migration crisis, said: “The current exodus of migrants is the largest we have seen since Partition. Hundreds of thousands have decided to travel back on foot, tempos, trucks and whatever transport they can find, in terrible conditions. While they were initially prevented from travelling because of fears related to the spread of Covid-19, they are now being asked to stay back because of fears of the impact on the economy that depends on cheap migrant labour.”
The India Meteorological Department (IMD), Nagpur division declared heat wave conditions for Nagpur, Akola and Chandrapur, all recorded maximum temperatures over 45 degrees Celsius in Vidarbha subdivision on Friday. “When the actual maximum temperature remains 45 degrees Celsius or more irrespective of normal maximum temperature, we declare heatwave,” said ML Sahu, deputy director-general of meteorology, IMD Nagpur.
In Uttar Pradesh, the Met department has issued for warning of heatwave conditions in the next 48 hours. Heatwave condition is very likely at isolated places over the state, the weather office said. The day temperature remained above normal in many cities of the state. 
At 46.1 degree Celsius, Jhansi was hottest in the state. It was 3.1 degrees Celsius above normal. Taj city Agra was 45.4 degrees Celsius, Prayagraj 45, Kanpur was 44.5 degrees Celsius, Aligarh and Banda was 44 degrees Celsius.
The neighbouring Madhya Pradesh recorded maximum 46 degree Celsius temperature at Nowgong in Chhatarpur district. As per the meteorological department, as many as 28 towns in the state record maximum temperature between 41 and 46 degree Celsius. The department forecast that heat wave may be witnessed in parts of Khargone, Khandwa and Burhanpur in Nimad region in the next 24 hours.
The maximum temperature of Patna and Gaya, two prominent cities of Bihar, continued to hover around 42⁰C before it was brought down to 33-35⁰C owing to a few spells of showers a couple of days ago.
The two Telugu states of Telangana and Andhra Pradesh started witnessing extreme heatwave conditions from Thursday. According to IMD officials in Hyderabad, the maximum temperature of 45.6 degrees Celsius was recorded in Khammam as on Friday morning. 
Adilabad, Nalgonda and Ramagundam recorded 44 degrees Celsius, followed by Nizamabad (43.9), Bhadrachalam (43.8), Mahabubnagar and Medak (43.6). Hyderabad recorded the hottest day of the year so far with 42 degrees Celsius.
Even, prominent hill stations including Shimla, Manali, Dharamshala and Dalhousie of Himachal saw warmer than usual days as temperatures increased by two degrees on Friday. 
Himachal’s director, Meteorological Department Dr Manmohan Singh said the maximum temperatures are very likely to increase in the coming days and are very likely going to be more than 40 degrees in lower hills of the state.
With 39.7 degrees maximum temperature, Una was the hottest place in the state and Shimla recorded 27.1 degrees maximum temperature while Manali, Dharamshala and Dalhousie recorded 28.4, 29.2 and 22.4 degrees maximum temperature. Kufri, near Shimla recorded 20.2 degrees maximum temperature. 
In Punjab, Bathinda recorded the highest of 43.6 degree Celsius followed by Amritsar 41.6 and Ludhiana 40.8.

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