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Jun 11, 2019-Tuesday
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Even being indoors doesn’t give relief from severe heat

The worst affected by this “severe heat wave”, a condition when the temperature hovers above 47 degrees, were those like Rani, who cannot afford air conditioners or coolers, or even remain inside their houses during the day.

delhi Updated: Jun 11, 2019 03:18 IST
Soumya Pillai
Soumya Pillai
Hindustan Times, New Delhi
heatwave,heatwave in delhi,delhi
Indians sit under the shade of trees to beat the heat in New Delhi, India, Monday, June 10, 2019. Severe heat wave conditions are sweeping north and western parts of India with maximum temperature soaring to 48 degree Celsius (118 F) in some parts of Rajasthan state. (AP Photo/Manish Swarup)(AP)

On Monday, when the mercury levels touched 48°C at the Palam Observatory of the India Meteorological Department, it was the hottest June day and second highest temperature this part of the city has ever encountered. The previous highest was 48.4°C recorded in May1998.

Nearly 10km from the observatory, Sugandha Rani was squatting outside a private clinic in West Delhi’s Madhu Vihar. On Friday, she had come to Delhi to meet her husband, a labourer in the city, from their native village in Madhya Pradesh, with their two daughters. The Monday heat, however, landed her in the emergency room.

“The summer is bad in our village too at this time, but here the heat is too harsh. Since morning, I was finding it very difficult to breathe,” she said.

Palam was only slightly better than Churu, in Rajasthan — the hottest place in the country on Monday — that recorded 50.3°C.

The worst affected by this “severe heat wave”, a condition when the temperature hovers above 47 degrees, were those like Rani, who cannot afford air conditioners or coolers, or even remain inside their houses during the day.

Dr. Sudhanshu Malhotra said that his clinic has seen large crowds since last week — some complaining of stomach aches and vomiting, and others feeling dizzy.

“This is the time when you can fall seriously ill if you do not take precautions. Staying out for long, or eating food kept outside for a long time can affect people. Today’s heat was dry, which comes with the risk of dehydrating you,” Malhotra said.

Also read | Meltdown in Delhi: June keeps getting hotter

Eight kilometers from the observatory, Dwarka Sector 10 sweet shop owner Rahul Agarwal lost 25 kilograms of product to the heat. “Despite refrigeration, a lot of the sweets made in the morning had gone bad by evening. We had to turn customers away, telling them that much of the sweets on display had gone bad and could not be sold. Later we had to throw it away,” he said.

Many residents of Mehram Nagar, near the Palam observatory, were seen strolling around the grounds of the Delhi Airport.

“It was getting suffocating at home. Even the cooler was not helping. We decided to get the children outside after sundown to get some fresh air,” said Rehmat Qureshi, who works as a housemaid.

Several residents of the gated neighbourhoods of Dwarka took the task of helping the under privileged in their locality as they braved the heat. In sector-3’s Adarsh Apartments, the residents’ welfare association (RWA) ensured that the security guards were supplied with cold drinking water throughout the day.

“We even extended the lunch break for the ground staff so that they do not have to be out in the sun during afternoon,” said Tripti Rajput, a resident of the colony.

First Published: Jun 11, 2019 03:18 IST