Delhi experienced its hottest day of the season and also the hottest day in May in 10 years on Thursday with the mercury rising to a sizzling 45.7 degrees Celsius, six degrees above normal. The minimum temperature of 31.4 degrees Celsius was also five degrees above normal.
Humidity levels were low with a maximum of 41 per cent and a minimum of 18 per cent and the sun was more fierce than usual with hot winds making its impact even greater. The blistering sun made life difficult for those who were unfortunate to be on the city’s streets even though the citizens who are used to Delhi summers could be seen cautiously covering their heads with cloth and protecting their eyes with sun glasses.
“I was unfortunate to be caught out in the sun around 1 p.m. when I stepped out for some work. I waited for an auto for almost 15 minutes. Even the massive tree I was standing under could not provide much respite from the heat,” said Nidhi, a college-goer in South Delhi.
The intense heat will worsen still, with the weatherman forecasting a rise in the minimum temperature to 32 degrees Celsius on Friday. The maximum temperature might go down marginally to about 45 degrees Celsius.
However, all hope for slightly cooler days ahead is not lost with the weatherman forecasting a drop in the temperature after Saturday due to western disturbances over Kashmir and adjoining areas.
According to the India Meteorological Department duty officer, the hottest day in May was last experienced in 2003. And on May 29, 1944 the city had reeled under a maximum temperature of 47.2 degrees Celsius.