Heatwave grips North India: Delhi’s Najafgarh hits record high of 47.4°C, schools declare holidays

North India, including Haryana and Delhi, faced severe heatwave conditions with temperatures exceeding 45 degrees Celsius. Schools in Delhi and Punjab declared summer holidays due to the extreme weather. Delhi's peak power demand reached a record high for May, hitting 7,572 MW.

Livemint
First Published21 May 2024
Gurugram, India-May 20, 2024: A postman going to deliver the letter in heat wave on a hot summer day at sector-17/18 dividing road near Iffco chowk, in Gurugram, India, on Monday, 20 May 2024. (Photo by Parveen Kumar/Hindustan Times)
Gurugram, India-May 20, 2024: A postman going to deliver the letter in heat wave on a hot summer day at sector-17/18 dividing road near Iffco chowk, in Gurugram, India, on Monday, 20 May 2024. (Photo by Parveen Kumar/Hindustan Times)

Large parts of north India, including Haryana and Delhi, experienced severe heatwave conditions, with temperatures soaring to extreme levels.

The national capital, Najafgarh, recorded the highest temperature in the country on Monday, at 47.4 degrees Celsius.

The scorching heat persisted with temperatures above 45 degrees Celsius in significant areas of Rajasthan, Haryana, Delhi, Chandigarh, and Uttar Pradesh. The intense heatwave disrupted daily life, prompting many individuals to stay indoors during the afternoon hours, PTI reported.

Also Read: Weather update: IMD predicts heavy rainfall in THESE states till May 24. Check details here

“Today (Monday), heatwave to severe heatwave conditions were observed in many places over Haryana and Delhi. Heatwave conditions were observed in some pockets over Rajasthan and Uttar Pradesh and isolated pockets of Punjab, Gujarat and Madhya Pradesh,” the India Meteorological Department (IMD) said.

Temperatures soared once again in several parts of Delhi, surpassing the 47 degrees Celsius mark. The weather office issued a red alert for the next five days, cautioning of heatwave to severe heatwave conditions in the national capital.

Several state governments, including Delhi and Punjab, took precautionary measures in response to the extreme weather. Schools were instructed to declare holidays for a few days, but the option of online classes was provided to ensure continuity in education.

Through a circular from the Directorate of Education, the Delhi government directed schools that had not yet closed for summer vacations to do so immediately. All schools were instructed to observe summer vacation from May 11 to June 30 for the current academic year.

Similarly, the Punjab government announced summer holidays in all government, aided, and private schools from May 21 to June 30 due to the severe heatwave conditions prevailing in the region.

Also Read: Red alert for heatwave in Delhi, 3 more states today; IMD issues heavy rainfall warning in THESE. Check weather updates

The searing heat also pushed Delhi's peak power demand to its highest for May. Real-time data from the State Load Dispatch Centre, Delhi, showed the peak power demand at 7,572 MW at 3:33 p.m. This was the highest-ever peak power demand for Delhi in May. It was also higher than the peak power demand recorded last year—7,438 MW—on August 22.

Ayanagar in the national capital recorded a maximum temperature of 45.7 degrees Celsius, four notches above normal. The weather station clocked 47.4 degrees Celsius on May 28, 1988, the highest between 1967 and 2024, when data is available.

Safdarjung, Delhi's base station, recorded its highest maximum temperature of 47.2 degrees Celsius on May 29, 1944—the highest for the weather station, which has maintained records since 1931.

Also Read: Weather updates: Heatwave alert in Delhi and other regions, rainfall in THESE southern states. Check IMD predictions

Near the international airport, the Palam station recorded a maximum temperature of 48.4 degrees Celsius on May 26, 1998. Palam has records dating back to 1956.

In Rajasthan, the mercury soared to 46.3 degrees Celsius in Ganganagar, 46.1 degrees in Barmer, 45.8 degrees in Kota, 45.5 degrees in Churu and 44.8 degrees in Bikaner.

In Madhya Pradesh, Ratlam and Nowgong recorded a maximum temperature of 45.5 degrees Celsius, Datia at 45.2 degrees, Khajuraho at 44.8 degrees, and Gwalior at 44.7 degrees.

In Haryana, Sirsa recorded a maximum temperature of 47.2 degrees Celsius, followed by Nuh at 46.8 degrees, Faridabad at 46.2 degrees, Jhajjar at 45.9 degrees, and Bhiwani and Narnaul at 45.7 degrees each.

Chandigarh, the joint capital of Punjab and Haryana, recorded a high of 43.2 degrees Celsius.

In Punjab, Amritsar recorded a maximum temperature of 44.5 degrees Celsius while Ludhiana recorded 43.6 degrees.

Last week, a group of leading climate scientists said similar heat waves could occur once every 30 years, and due to climate change, they have already become about 45 times more likely.

(With inputs from PTI)

 

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