Unprecedented heat claimed at least 35 lives in different districts of Andhra Pradesh on Friday.
Eight people, including a student traveling in a bus and a passenger on Godavari Express, died in Warangal district. Eight more are suspected to have succumbed to sun stroke in Karimnagar, four in Nalgonda, three each in Adilabad and Prakasam districts, two each in Guntur and Ranga Reddy districts and one each in Medak, East Godavari, Kadapa, Chittor and Nizamabad.
Unofficial reports have put Friday’s toll at 49. The state government has announced a compensation of Rs 50,000 to the kin of the deceased, only after postmortem confirms death due to the heat. According to a government release, “the highest maximum temperature of 47 degree Celsius was recorded at Bapatla, Rentachintala and Ramagundam on Thursday.”
Heat wave conditions would prevail for the next two days in Nellore, Prakasham, Guntur and Krishna districts of coastal Andhra Pradesh, besides Adilabad, Nizamabad, Karimnagar, Warangal, Nalgonda, Medak and Hyderabad in the Telangana region. The official toll due to sunstroke from April 1 this year has reached 84, with Karimnagar topping the list with 43 deaths .
Mercury soared by at least one degree in many places, taking the state average to 45 degree Celsius on Friday. Reports pointed out that though the coal belt in Manuguru, Khammam district, clocked 50 degree Celsius, coal mines were not shut down.
Telangana JAC convener Kodandaram on Friday demanded that the state government should shut down the coal mines in Manuguru and declare a public holiday. “The temperatures have crossed the 50 degree mark but the government is making poor men work in very dangerous conditions by announcing lower temperatures,” Kodandaram alleged.
Khammam town has recorded 49 degrees Celsius, Kurnool 43 degrees, Mahbubnagar 44 degrees, Medak 45 degrees, Nandyala 43 degrees, Nizamabad 45 degrees, Ongole 45 degrees, Ramagundam 45 degrees, Medak 45 degrees, Rentachintala 47 degrees, Tuni 42 degrees, Vizianagaram 49 degrees, Warangal 49 degrees, Hyderabad 45 degrees and Karimnagar 49 degrees.
Animals in the Nallamala forest area of Mahbubnagar district were found wandering in the nearby villages in search of water.