A small village in Raigad district of Maharashtra recorded a maximum temperature of 46.5 degrees Celsius Tuesday. While it is usual for this part of the state to record high temperatures in summers, what was unusual in Tuesday’s reading is the fact that it was highest in the country, which was a first for Bhira that never crossed the 45-degree mark before. Meteorologists from Mumbai will visit the observatory in Bhira Friday to ascertain the reading.
Official data reveals Bhira was seven degrees above normal Tuesday.
Unusually high temperature in Raigad village: IMD to study readings
Less than 24 hours later, however, the maximum temperature dropped to 41 degrees Celsius. The mean temperature in Bhira for the month of March between period of 1961 and 1990 was 39.3 degrees C, data indicates.
“This is very unusual, especially since the region is in the Konkan belt. Meteorologists would visit the site on Friday to ascertain the reading. The observatory is a non-departmental observatory that is handled by the government but has a trained official who relays the readings to us,” said Sunil Kamble, director in charge, India Meteorological Department, Mumbai.
According to Kamble, the observatory is surrounded by three hills and could have seen unusual heating. A probe would reveal if the readings recorded were accurate, he said.
“On Wednesday, Bhira’s temperature dipped drastically. We suspect that the hot winds on Tuesday afternoon could have raised the temperature. However, considering the wind pattern and all the other factors, we will study the observatory,” Kamble added.
Bhira is home to the third hydropower plant of the Tata Power Company Ltd. (TPCL), set up in 1927. The highest temperature recorded in the village last year was 45 degrees.
Meanwhile, hot and dry winds from Kutch in Gujarat and central India are heating up central Maharashtra and Vidarbha.
With as many as 13 observatories recording maximum temperature above 40 degrees C, weather forecasters believe the areas will experience a hot summer, with the area hotter by about four degrees. IMD issued a warning of continuing heatwaves at a few isolated places over Madhya Maharashtra and Vidarbha until Friday.
According to the IMD data, Malegaon, Nagpur, Chandrpur and Wardha had all recorded 43 degrees and were among the hottest parts of the state. While Yavatmal and Nanded registered 42 degrees, Parbhani, Aurangabad and Gondia were 41 degrees. All these places are believed to be experiencing moderate heatwave-like conditions. Mumbai had recorded 38.4 degrees Celsius Monday but the mercury has since continued to drop and the maximum temperature on Wednesday was 33 degrees.