A severe heatwave is likely to continue over north Indian plains, central ans South India for two more days. "Due to easterly winds at lower levels over northern parts of the country, the severity of the heatwave is very likely to decrease over Punjab, Haryana, Chandigarh and Delhi and Uttar Pradesh from today (Sunday) onwards," PTI quoted the IMD as saying.

The Met department has also issued a red-coded colour warning for Madhya Pradesh and West Rajasthan. The India Meterological Department (IMD) has four colour codes to indicate the severity of weather conditions – red for extremely severe weather, followed by amber, yellow and then green which denotes normalcy.

Hot and dry weather is likely to prevail in the national capital Monday, though a slight relief from the scorching heat is expected in the next 48 hours. As per a PTI report, the weatherman said slight relief from the stifling heat is expected Tuesday onwards due to the "possibility of thundery development".

North India has been reeling under a heat wave over the last week, with the mercury soaring to 45 degrees Celsius mark in cities like Delhi, Jaipur, Kota, Hyderabad, and Lucknow. Even places like Shimla, Nainital, and Srinagar in the Himalayas, which are expected to be cooler, recorded temperatures two to four degree above normal.

Monsoon likely to be delayed further, says Skymet

The sluggish pace of monsoon has further delayed its onset over Kerala to 7 June, private weather forecaster Skymet has said. "Dynamics of monsoon keep changing. So far not even one out of the three criteria needed for declaring the onset of monsoon has been met. In fact, it would take some more days for conditions to become favourable for the same," PTI quoted G P Sharma, president, meteorology and climate change, Skymet Weather as saying.

Sharma pointed out three main reasons for the sluggish pace of monsoon.

1. There has been a low pressure area off the Somalia coast on the Horn of Africa, which is governing the wind pattern.

2. An anti-cyclone — a high pressure system making the air more dense — over central Arabian Sea is pushing northerly winds that too are blowing along the west Coast.

3. The Somali jet phenomenon too is very important for the onset of monsoon surge.

-With inputs from PTI