Third day of India heatwave takes temperatures near record highs

Third day of India heatwave takes temperatures near record highs

People get sweet drinks poured on to their cup amid India heatwave
Indian volunteers distribute sweet water during a hot summer day, in Amritsar, Jun 2, 2019. (Photo: AFP/Narinder NANU)

CHURU: Temperatures in an Indian desert city hit 50 degrees Celsius on Monday (Jun 3) - the second time in three days as a deadly heatwave maintained its grip on the country.

The thermometer hit 50.3 degrees Celsius in Churu in Rajasthan state, sending residents scrambling for shade to escape the searing sun.

On Saturday it reached 50.6 Celsius, close to the country's record of 51 degrees Celsius, recorded in the Rajasthan city of Phalodi in May 2016.

READ: The world's 15 hottest places

READ: India heatwave temperatures pass 50 degrees Celsius

Cities across northern India have been sweltering, with temperatures above 47 degrees Celsius.

Man drinks water from jug amid India heatwave
An Indian Sikh man drinks water from an earthen pot during a hot summer afternoon at a roadside in Amritsar, Jun 2, 2019. (Photo: AFP/NARINDER NANU)

Indian children take a bath at a roadside tap during a hot summer afternoon in Allahabad
Indian children take a bath at a roadside tap during a hot summer afternoon in Allahabad, Jun 2, 2019. (Photo: AFP/SANJAY KANOJIA)

A farmer died in Sikar district of Rajasthan on Sunday after suffering heatstroke, the Press Trust of India news agency reported. Other deaths have also been reported.

The Indian Meteorological Department said the severe heatwave was likely to continue in Rajasthan and Madhya Pradesh states on Tuesday.

New Delhi and neighbouring Uttar Pradesh state would also be affected by extreme weather, it said.

Indian residents hold empty buckets as they protest against the Municipal Corporation
Indian residents hold empty buckets as they protest against the Municipal Corporation and the state government demanding regular water supply in Amritsar, Jun 2, 2019.  (Photo: AFP/Narinder NANU)

An Indian man rests under a bridge during a hot summer afternoon in Allahabad
An Indian man rests under a bridge during a hot summer afternoon in Allahabad, Jun 2, 2019. (Photo: AFP/SANJAY KANOJIA)

Temperatures fell to about 40 degrees Celsius in Delhi on Monday, but residents still complained of heat exhaustion.

"It's really hot right now but what can we do? We still need to keep our business going. We need to be able to feed ourselves, so we have to stay open," said market trader Laxmi Jagdish.

Indian youths play in a swimming pool on a hot summer day on the outskirts of Amritsar
Indian youths play in a swimming pool on a hot summer day on the outskirts of Amritsar, Jun 2, 2019. (Photo: AFP/Narinder NANU)

The annual monsoon - which normally brings much-needed rain to South Asia - is running a week behind schedule and is only expected to hit India's southern tip on Jun 6.

Private forecaster Skymet has warned there will be less rain than average this year.

The Indian peninsula has seen a drastic change in rainfall patterns over the past decade, marked by frequent droughts, floods and sudden storms.

According to weather monitoring website El Dorado, out of the 15 hottest places in the world in the past 24 hours, 11 were in India and four in neighbouring Pakistan.

Source: AFP/jt

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