India’s capital sees first heat-related death this year, media reports

By Thomson Reuters May 30, 2024 | 12:31 AM

NEW DELHI (Reuters) – India’s capital Delhi recorded its first heat-related death this year as temperatures reached record highs, media reported on Thursday.

Parts of northwest and central India have been experiencing heat wave to severe heat wave conditions for weeks, and the temperature in Delhi reached a record high of 52.9 degrees Celsius (127.22°F) in Mungeshpur neighbourhood on Wednesday.

That reading may be revised however, as maximum temperatures in other parts of the city ranged from 45.2 C to 49.1 C.

The capital territory’s first heat-related fatality this year was a 40-year-old labourer who died of heatstroke on Wednesday, The Indian Express newspaper reported.

Delhi’s lieutenant governor on Wednesday directed the government to ensure measures were taken to protect labourers by providing water and shaded areas at construction sites and granting them paid leave from noon to 3 p.m.

Delhi recorded a temperature of 36 C which felt like 37.8 C on Thursday morning, according to India’s weather department. It has predicted heat wave to severe heat wave conditions over northwest and central India will begin reducing gradually from today.

India classifies a heat wave as a situation where the maximum temperature is 4.5 C to 6.4 C above normal, while a severe heat wave occurs when the maximum is higher than normal by 6.5 degrees or more.

(Reporting by Sakshi Dayal; Editing by Stephen Coates)