There was no respite from the scorching conditions in the nation’s capital on Tuesday, with several localities reporting maximum temperatures above 45 degrees Celsius (C), records from the Indian Meteorological Department (IMD) showed. Met officials said the city could get some respite from June 11, when showers and isolated thunderstorms are expected.
On Tuesday, the maximum temperature at Safdarjung Observatory, Delhi’s base station for weather records, was 43.5C, three degrees above normal, while the minimum temperature was 27.6 °C. At the Palam observatory, the maximum temperature rose to 44°C, also three degrees above what is considered normal for this time of year.
While the city’s main station readings were slightly below the parameters for a “heat wave” — a heat wave is declared on the plains when the maximum temperature is 40°C or more and 4 .5 degrees above normal, for two consecutive days — there are a few localities where the daytime temperature was around 45°C, a deviation of nearly five degrees from normal.
In Mungeshpur, the maximum temperature reached 46.3°C, six degrees above normal and in Najafgarh, the maximum temperature was 45.9°C, five degrees above normal. The Ridge Weather Observatory also recorded 44.9C, five degrees above normal, according to IMD.
Senior Met officials said the last longest and most widespread heat wave over northwest and central India, including Delhi, occurred between May 18 and May 20. No such period was observed from May 21 to 31, due to easterly winds blowing from the north. India, which also brought two active western disturbances to the region, triggering intense rains and thunderstorms.
“From May 31, the impact of the easterly winds lessened and we started to have dry and hot westerly winds on the Pakistani side, making parts of northwest and central India dry. and hot,” said RK Jenamani, senior scientist at IMD.
He added: “Due to hot winds, maximum temperatures have risen and a new heat wave has developed over isolated pockets in northwest Rajasthan, Punjab, Haryana, some pockets of Delhi and NCR, Uttar Pradesh and northern parts of Madhya Pradesh from June 4.
Weather experts said there was a possibility of light rain and thunder activity over Punjab, Haryana and NCR Delhi on June 11, which could bring some respite from the heat.
Mahesh Palawat, Vice President (Weather and Climate Change) at Skymet Weather Services, said that after this brief spell of rain and thunder on June 11, pre-monsoon activity at Delhi-NCR is expected to resume from June 16 to June 17.
“It is possible that a western disturbance will affect Delhi-NCR on June 11, which will bring light rain and thunder activity, but from June 16 to 17, once the south-west monsoon advances, l Pre-monsoon activity will continue at a steady pace and these rains will keep the temperature from rising above a certain level,” Palawat said.