The heat wave is on in Kerala. The government has warned that the temperatures will be intense this summer, and is likely to remain high until Friday. Alerts have been raised in eight of the 14 districts in Kerala. Authorities have cautioned people to avoid direct exposure to sun for extended periods, especially in the noon.
In Palakkad district, the heat has risen to 39 degrees Celsius. It's 38 and 37 degrees in Kollam and Kottayam respectively. The temperatures in other districts have also risen to the 35-degree mark. This is more than the average temperature experienced during March, according to statistical data.
Temperatures in Thiruvananthapuram, Kollam, Pathanamthitta, Alappuzha, Kottayam, Thrissur, Palakkad and Kozhikode districts are expected to climb three more degrees from the current level, the Central Meteorological Department informed.
The lack of summer rains experienced during this time of the year has also aggravated the problem. As of March 1, the state has recorded 38 per cent decline in summer rain. The water reserves in the state are therefore falling dramatically. Electricity consumption has jumped to over 83 million units. This is an all-time record for Kerala.
Electioneering in the sun
Political workers, especially those already under treatment for diabetes, high-blood pressure and kidney problems should consult their doctors before plunging into electioneering work in hot sun, doctors have warned.
Though many candidates are relying on social media these days, some prefer to meet the voters to make their presence felt. Usually there are public gatherings and meetings to seek votes ahead of the elections, however, doctors suggest that direct exposure to sun over extended periods must be avoided at all cost.
Before the election dates were announced, Kerala Disaster Management Authority had warned that the northern districts of the state should brace for a surge in temperature levels. According to reports, temperatures are likely to go up by 8 degree Celsius from the average in Kozhikode, Palakkad, Thrissur and Malapurram districts.
On Monday, Kerala Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan had told party workers in Alappuzha to be alert about dehydration and sunstroke risks while campaigning in the hot sun.