Delhi recorded a mean maximum temperature of 33.1 degrees Celsius this month, making it the hottest March in the last 11 years, the India Meteorological Department said on Wednesday.
IMAGE: A boy jumps into a canal to cool off on a hot summer day in New Delhi. Photograph: Adnan Abidi/Reuters
Normally, the mean maximum temperature for the month of March in the national capital is 29.6 degrees Celsius, it said.
This is the highest mean maximum temperature in March since 2010, when it was 34.1 degrees Celsius, said Kuldeep Srivastava, the head of the IMD’s regional forecasting centre.
Such high temperatures in the month of March this year can be attributed to absence of strong western disturbances in the last 15 days, he said.
“Five WDs affected the plains of northwest India this month, of which four were in the initial 15 days. The city recorded rainfall only on two days. It had registered 10 rain days in March last year,” Srivastava said.
The mean maximum temperature for the month of March was 28.2 degrees Celsius in 2020 and 2019. It was 32.8 degrees Celsius in 2018; 30.7 degrees Celsius in 2017 and 31.5 degrees Celsius in 2016, according to the India Meteorological Department data.
Delhi had reeled under a “severe” heat wave on Monday, as the maximum temperature shot up to 40.1 degrees Celsius, making it the hottest day in March in 76 years, the IMD had said.
The city had recorded a maximum of 40.5 degrees Celsius on March 31, 1945 and 39.6 degrees Celsius on March 29, 1973, according to the IMD.
Meanwhile, the weather department said the north Indian plains which have been reeling under a heatwave are likely to get some relief over the next two days with temperatures expected to fall by 3-5 degrees Celsius.
The relief, however, will be short. Another heatwave is likely over the plains by April 3, it added.