New Delhi, May 26 (PTI) Several parts of north and west India reeled under scorching heat wave with the temperature touching 50 degrees Celsius in Rajasthan's Churu district on Tuesday, even as the meteorological department predicted very heavy rainfall in Assam and Meghalaya till May 28.
The national capital recorded a maximum of 47.6 degrees Celsius in the Palam area, while most places here saw their maximum temperatures six notches above the normal.
In large areas, a heat wave is declared when the maximum temperature is 45 degrees Celsius for two consecutive days and a severe heat wave is when the mercury touches the 47 degrees-mark for two days on the trot.
In small areas like Delhi, heat wave is declared if the temperature soars to 45 degrees Celsius even for a day, according to the India Meteorological Department (IMD).
Severe heat wave conditions prevailed in parts of Rajasthan, with the mercury touching 50 degrees Celsius in Churu district.
This is the second-highest maximum temperature recorded in the district in the month of May in the last 10 years.
The district had recorded a high of 50.2 degrees Celsius on May 19, 2016, according to the meteorological (MeT) department.
Bikaner, Ganganagar, Kota and Jaipur recorded maximum temperatures of 47.4 degrees Celsius, 47 degrees Celsius, 46.5 degrees Celsius and 45 degrees Celsius, respectively, it said.
The weather office has predicted severe heat wave conditions in Churu, Bikaner, Hanumangarh and Ganganagar districts during the next 24 hours.
In Delhi, the Safdarjung Observatory, which provides representative figures for the city, recorded a maximum of 46 degrees Celsius, as Delhi sweltered under a scorching heat wave.
The last time the mercury at the Safdarjung weather station touched the 46-degrees-Celsius mark was on May 19, 2002, said Kuldeep Srivastava, the head of the regional forecasting centre of the.
The all-time record for Safdarjung in May is 47.2 degrees Celsius, recorded on May 29, 1944.
The last time the Palam Observatory recorded such a high temperature in May -- 47.6 degrees Celsius -- was on May 18, 2010, Srivastava said.
The IMD said the weather stations at Lodhi Road and Aya Nagar recorded their respective maximum at 45.4 degrees and 46.8 degrees Celsius.
Srivastava said some respite from the stifling heat was expected on Thursday due to a fresh western disturbance and easterly winds at lower levels.
Dust storm and thunderstorm with winds gusting up to 60 kilometres per hour is likely over the National Capital Region on Friday and Saturday, the official added.
Heat wave conditions continued unabated at many places in Uttar Pradesh with Allahabad being the hottest place in the state at 47.1 degrees Celsius, the meteorological department said.
Such conditions are likely to continue for another three-four days over the state, it added.
Heat wave conditions continued unabated at a few places over the state. There was a severe heat wave at isolated places over East Uttar Pradesh, the MeT office said.
It said Allahabad continued to be the hottest place in the state, recording a maximum of 47.1 degrees Celsius.
Day temperatures rose appreciably over Gorakhpur and Faizabad divisions, it said.
The temperatures were markedly above normal over Varanasi and Faizabad divisions and appreciably above normal in the remaining divisions of the state, the MeT office said.
Haryana and Punjab including Chandigarh were in the grip of severe heat on Tuesday, with Hisar turning out to be the hottest place in the region at 48 degrees Celsius.
Hisar in Haryana recorded its hottest day of the current summer season so far, with the maximum temperature settling five notches above the normal, the Met department said.
Narnaul recorded at 46 degrees Celsius and Karnal at 44 degrees Celsius. In Punjab, Patiala recorded a high of 44.7 degrees Celsius and Ludhiana 44.1 degrees Celsius.
Chandigarh, the common capital of the two states, also experienced a hot day at 43.1 degrees Celsius, four degrees above normal limits.
In Gujarat, the temperature ranged between 39 degrees Celsius to 43 degrees Celsius, with Ahmedabad recording 43.7 degrees Celsius, while heat wave prevailed in central Maharashtra and Marathwada regions. The maximum temperature was above normal in most parts of the Konkan region.
For Assam and Meghalaya, however, the IMD has issued a red-colour coded weather alert from May 26-28, predicting very heavy rainfall in these two northeastern states.
Arunachal Pradesh is witnessing incessant rains and a 30-year-old woman and her two children were buried alive after a massive landslide hit their house in Dibang Valley district.
"Red-colour coded warning has been issued to Assam and Meghalaya for the next three days," IMD director general Mrurunjay Mohapatra said.
He added that northeast India gets maximum rainfall in June, followed by May.
Meanwhile, advancement of the monsoon which was hindered by super cyclonic storm Amphan will start from Wednesday, Devi said.
According to the IMD, the monsoon is likely to hit Kerala on June 5, four days after its normal onset date.
The IMD has also cautioned fishermen along the coasts of Kerala, Karnataka not to venture out for deep sea fishing from May 30-June 4.
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