Well over 1,100 people have reportedly died in the biggest heatwave sweeping India. The temperatures approached 50C (122F) in many parts of the country.
The deaths are occurring due to heat strokes and extreme dehydration occurring mostly in rural areas. The government has issued compensation of 1,200 dollars to relatives of the killed.
The Indian meteorological office said it expects temperatures continuing “heatwave to severe heatwave” for the rest of the month. “It is hot. It will stay hot. People must stay inside and drink lots of water,” Devendra Sharma, an official at the Indian meteorological office said.
Kolkata taxi drivers stopped work from 11am to 4pm after a taxi driver was reported to have died.
Large malls saw record number of visitors as they have their own generators which kept customers cool.
“We see more and more people walk in, spend some time here and walk out without buying anything. But we understand. It’s terribly hot outside,” Nasir, a security guard at a mall in the city of Patna, told the Times of India newspaper.
The death toll of the victims has well surpassed the 2010 total.
The monsoon is expected to hit South India on 31 May and will bring relief to the south but won’t reach the northern areas of the country.