Severe heatwave conditions affecting Bihar, India claimed the lives of at least 70 people over the past 24 hours, state authorities reported June 17, 2019.
Temperatures across the state are reaching 45 °C (113 °F) for the third straight week and above 50 °C (122 °F) in the desert state of Rajasthan.
Temperatures in the city of Patna, also known as Pataliputra - the capital and largest city of the state of Bihar, reached 44.4 °C (111.9 °F) on June 16, making it the hottest place in the country that day.
Heatwave alert is in effect for the entire state, except a few districts in its NE parts, for the next 48 hours, TOI reports.
The death toll surged to at least 70, authorities said, adding that most of them died on Saturday, June 15 when Patna registered 45.8 °C (114.4 °F). This was its highest maximum temperature for the month of June over the past 10 years.
The temperature in the city was 8 °C (14 °F) above average for the day.
Pre-monsoon showers are expected on June 21 and 22, offering a slight respite from the heat.
The southwest monsoon, however, is unlikely to hit Bihar before June 25, representing a two-week delay from its normal onset in the state.
Featured image credit: Chandan Singh