Heatwave death toll passes over 1000 in India

Over thousand people lose their lives due to massive heatwave that swept across India as temperature goes up nearly 50 degree Celsius

Photo by: Reuters
Photo by: Reuters

Updated Jul 28, 2015

A major heatwave caused the death of over a thousand people since last week as the weather temperature saw 50 degree Celsius (122 Fahrenheit) in the southern India.

India's Meteorological Department said on Tuesday it had issued hearting warnings to several states where temperatures were measured to have been around 45 degrees over the next few days.

"As of now, we don't predict any respite from the extreme heatwave for the next few days," said spokesman B. P. Yadav.

Indian authorities advised people to stay indoors and that hospitals were on alert to treat victims affected by heatstroke.

The highest temperature in the heat wave was recorded as being 50 degrees Celsius (118 degrees Fahrenheit) in Telangana state, where figures are being collected by Indian officials and the death toll is most likely to rise.

Around 188 people have died in Telangana, most of the figures recorded in the middle of last week, according to D. Vani, an official with the state's disaster management department.

Authorities warned the residents to not work for long hours during day time after 246 people died due to the high temperatures a week before.

The high temperature deserted the streets of Hyderabad, capital of the worst-hit southern state of Andhra Pradesh where over 850 people have died since the last week.

"The state government has taken up education programmes through television and other media to tell people not to venture into the outside without a cap, to drink water and other measures," P. Tulsi Rani, special commissioner for disaster management in the state told AFP.

"We have also requested NGOs and government organisations to open up drinking water camps so that water will be readily available for all the people in the towns," he added.

Deaths are not restricted to the south of India, with several deaths also being reported in the northwestern desert state of Rajasthan, according to the Press Trust of India.

Temperatures slightly fell in Telangana on Tuesday and are expected to decline in Andhra Pradesh in the coming days.

The weather is also expected to be cooled when the monsoon winds and rains started at the end of this month.


TRTWorld and agencies