Delhi: Rainfall on May 5 to bring relief from heatwave
Delhi is likely to witness some relief from the ongoing heatwave as the India Meteorological Department (IMD) predicted rainfall in the national capital on Thursday (May 5). The IMD also forecast a maximum temperature of 43 °C for Delhi, which has been experiencing hot spells since March, for Sunday. Some weather observatories in Delhi recorded even higher maximum temperatures—crossing the 47 °C mark—on Saturday.
- India is witnessing an intense heatwave ahead of peak summer. The heatwave conditions are already causing heat-related illnesses in Delhi residents.
- The unusually high temperatures are being attributed to a paucity of rainfall caused by the absence of active western disturbances.
- Notably, India's electricity consumption has also risen amid the heatwave. A further rise in temperatures has been predicted in many parts of India.
To note, the maximum temperature recorded at CWG Sports Complex in East Delhi on Saturday stood at 47.1 °C, the highest witnessed by any weather station in the city. The highest temperature in Gurugram on Saturday was marginally lower at 46.2 °C. Meanwhile, Delhi's Safdarjung meteorological observatory recorded a maximum temperature of 43.5 °C for the third consecutive day, according to the IMD.
The IMD has forecast a dust storm or thunderstorm in Delhi from Monday to Wednesday due to a western disturbance. On Thursday, the city will have overcast skies and light rain, it said. However, the western disturbance is unlikely to have a significant impact on the maximum temperature in northwest Indian regions until Wednesday, after which it could drop by up to 3 °C.
The air quality index (AQI) in Delhi was expected to be in the "poor" category on Sunday, but it might deteriorate to "very poor" on Monday because of dust, according to the Air Quality Early Warning System for Delhi. Apart from Delhi, dust storms or thunderstorms are expected in parts of Punjab, Haryana, and Chandigarh on Tuesday and Wednesday, according to the IMD's prediction.
As per Mrutyunjay Mohapatra, Director-General of the IMD, northwest and central India experienced "continuously scanty rainfall activity" in March and April. In fact, northwest India experienced a rainfall deficit of around 89% and 83% in March and April, respectively. Moreover, the western disturbances were weak and dry, which resulted in a shortfall in pre-monsoon rainfall in the northwest and central India, Mohapatra stated.