Bihar heatwave: Students faint at Sheikhpura school; Tejashwi Yadav criticizes government | Watch Video

  • Several students at a school in Bihar's Sheikhpura fainted due to severe heatwave conditions, necessitating immediate hospitalization. RJD leader Tejashwi Yadav condemned the government's response, calling for urgent measures to protect vulnerable children.

Livemint
First Published29 May 2024
The heat wave continues to pose serious health risks, highlighting the urgent need for better infrastructure and responsive governance to protect vulnerable populations, especially school children.
The heat wave continues to pose serious health risks, highlighting the urgent need for better infrastructure and responsive governance to protect vulnerable populations, especially school children.(HT_PRINT)

Several students at a local school in Bihar's Sheikhpura fainted as severe heatwave conditions prevailed in the region. The soaring temperatures, reaching an alarming 47 degrees Celsius, exacerbate the already dire situation in schools with inadequate infrastructure.

The affected students have been admitted to a hospital.

The incident has sparked widespread concern and criticism of the state government’s handling of the crisis.

Commenting on the situation, RJD leader Tejashwi Yadav lambasted the government, saying, "There is no government and democracy in Bihar but only bureaucracy. The CM is so weak that no one listens to him, even regarding the school timings. The temperature is 47 degrees, the loo is blowing, and at least the little children should have some relaxation. The infrastructure of schools in Bihar is not good... But, there is nothing in the CM's hands."

Record-Breaking Heat Prompts Red Alert in Northwest India

On Wednesday, India's weather department issued a red alert for several parts of the country's northwest, warning of a severe heat wave. This came a day after parts of the capital, Delhi, recorded their highest temperature ever at almost 50 degrees Celsius (122 Fahrenheit).

A red alert implies a "very high likelihood" of people developing "heat illness and heat stroke," and calls for "extreme care" for vulnerable people, according to the India Meteorological Department.

India has been grappling with unusually high temperatures this summer, and the weather department has said "heat wave to severe heat wave" conditions are likely to continue in several parts, including the capital, through Wednesday.

India declares a heat wave when a region's maximum temperature is 4.5°C to 6.4°C higher than usual, while a severe heat wave is declared when the maximum temperature is 6.5°C higher than normal or more.

Local weather stations in Delhi's Mungeshpur and Narela neighbourhoods recorded a temperature of 49.9 degrees Celsius on Tuesday, an all-time record for the city and 9°C above normal.

Delhi's local government also restricted the water supply because of the heat. It said water levels in the Yamuna River, the main source, were low. The city does not have an uninterrupted water supply at any time, but the government said neighbourhoods that received water for some hours twice a day would be subject to further restrictions.

"I appeal to all the residents that whether there is a water problem in your area or not, please use water very carefully," the local government's Water Minister, Atishi, said.

Billions of people across Asia, including India's neighbour Pakistan, have been experiencing a hotter summer this year—a trend international scientists say has been worsened by human-driven climate change.

Three more deaths were attributed to heat stroke on Tuesday in Jaipur in Rajasthan, local media reported, taking the city's toll to four and that of the state to at least 13.

Rising temperatures also prompted India's polling body to make additional arrangements when Delhi voted in the national elections last week. These included the deployment of paramedics at polling stations, which were also equipped with mist machines, shaded waiting areas, and cold water dispensers. The elections conclude on June 1, with counting set to take place on June 4.

(With inputs from agencies)

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