Lack of rain since Oct sends mercury soaring in Delhi

  • Mallica Joshi, Hindustan Times, New Delhi
  • Updated: May 20, 2016 21:45 IST
A man wipes sweat form his forehead as ferries goods in hot weather on his cycle rickshaw across the Old Yamuna bridge in New Delhi. (Gurinder Osan/Hindustan Times)

Delhi is not just hot but also parched this year.

The Capital has, this year, got less than 30% of the rain it is supposed to get. And that too is only because of two rainy days in March. If the last three months of 2015 (October, November and December) are taken into account, the deficit climbs to 80%.

According to India Meteorological Department officials, this is also one of the reasons why the temperature in Delhi has soared well before time.

“A strong western disturbance has not brought rain to the city for a very long time. This has led to the days becoming hot very early into the season. As a result, this April was among the hottest in recent times. In May, the temperature usually starts touching 43 and 44 degrees in the last week. But this year we are seeing these temperatures in the second week itself,” said a senior Met official.

Since January this year, Delhi has got only 17 mm rainfall instead of 59 mm that it usually receives during this time.

In March, the city received 15 mm rain in the first half. Since then only traces of rain were seen.

Read: Delhi cops to get ORS packs, wet collar bands to beat the heat

Delhi is not alone in this trend. According to officials, the whole of northwestern India has been reeling under a dry spell. On Friday, the maximum temperature (at Palam) was recorded at 43.5 degrees Celsius and the minimum was 30.8.

On Thursday the maximum temperature was 42.8 degrees Celsius, three degrees above normal. According to the weatherman, very light rain might accompany a thunderstorm on Saturday.

Data released by NASA has shown that last month was the hottest April on record and temperature patterns show that 2016 may become the hottest year in recorded history.

The data by space agency shows that April was 1.11 degrees Celsius warmer than average April temperatures between 1951 and 1980.

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