Unprecedented heatwave leaves 56 dead in India

Hundreds of heatstroke cases reported to different hospitals, local media reports.

NEW DELHI (Reuters): India saw nearly 25,000 cases of suspected heat stroke and 56 people lost their lives after several heatwave days across the country from March-May.

May has been a particularly bad month for the region, with temperature in capital Delhi and nearby state of Rajasthan touching 50 degrees Celsius (122 degrees Fahrenheit).

In a contrast, parts of eastern India have been reeling under the impact of cyclone Remal. Heavy rain in the north eastern state of Assam has killed 14 people since Tuesday.

In the island nation of Sri Lanka, at least 15 people have died due to flooding and landslides after heavy monsoon rain lashed the region, the country’s Disaster Management Centre (DMC) said on Sunday.

A confluence of factors has led to a very hot summer in South Asia, a trend scientists say has been worsened by human-driven climate change.

At least 33 people, including election officials on duty in India’s just-concluded general election, died of suspected heatstroke in the states of Uttar Pradesh and Bihar in the north, and Odisha in the east on Friday.

Data from the National Centre of Disease Control (NCDC)showed that the situation was worst in May, with 46 heat-related deaths and 19,189 suspected heat stroke cases, news website The Print reported.

Including suspected cases, the total number of deaths in India could be much higher at 80, newspaper The Hindu reported. Heatwave 

Over 5,000 cases of heatstroke were detected in the central state of Madhya Pradesh alone.

The weather office has predicted that heat wave conditions will be less severe till Wednesday and an early arrival of monsoon in the southern state of Kerala last week is expected to bring more relief.

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