Girls take shield against the hot wind in Dhanbad on Sunday. Picture by Gautam Dey
Jharkhandis, you better brace for hotter days.
Sunday turned out to be sun’s day across the state with most places recording temperatures over 42°C and a rising discomfort index. Bokaro, Dhanbad and Deoghar led the day’s Celsius chart with maximum temperature of 43°C, three notches above normal.
What’s worse is that weathermen have warned that dominating westerly winds may cause temperatures to soar further over the next two-three days.
“There will be no respite from the scorching sun in the next 72 hours. Weather across Jharkhand will remain largely dry, thanks to the prevailing wind pattern that is obstructing moisture incursion into the atmosphere,” said A.K. Sen, director of Patna Meteorological Centre.
Sen explained that westerly winds, which usually contributed to raising day temperatures, coupled with non-incursion of moisture were causing such extreme conditions.
The local office in Jamshedpur on Sunday recorded 42.5°C, two notches above the normal. The day’s discomfort index (measured on the basis of temperature, humidity and wind flow) touched an oppressive 60°C, five points above normal. Yesterday, the steel city had recorded 42.1°C.
Surrounding areas such as Chaibasa and Seraikela fretted over 42 °C.
Heat-cursed Daltonganj, which has been recording temperatures around 42°C — two notches above normal — for the last three days, continued to suffer on Sunday. Giridih, Chatra and Latehar also crossed the 42-mark on Sunday.
Ranchi remained a relative oasis, recording 38.6°C. Official data revealed that capital was the only part of the state where maximum temperature remained below 40°C. Discomfort index was about 58°C, three notches above normal. The index at Hazaribagh, Dhanbad, Bokaro and Deoghar surpassed the normal average.
The sweltering heat forced people to stay indoors. Those who had to go out had a tough time. “My skin was burning after a few minutes in the sun. I was wearing sunscreen, but the only way to escape being tanned was to wrap my dupatta around my face,” said Bistupur resident Shalini Singh, adding that only rain could bring relief.
The Regional Meteorological Centre in Calcutta, however, ruled out rainfall. “Satellite pictures and weather chart analysis show no signs of precipitation over Jharkhand in the next 48 hours. The maximum temperatures will rise,” said an official.
Weathermen in Ranchi said that partly cloudy skies were expected at a few places, especially those on hilly terrain. However, they too ruled out the possibility of rain.
“The weather conditions will be mainly dry over the next three days with a rising temperature trend,” said a Met official from Ranchi.