This month alone, the state has so far recorded 460 suspected heatstroke cases.
A total of 2,649 suspected heatstroke cases and 12 deaths have been reported across the state from March 1 to June 19, according to government data.
These numbers show that the delay in monsoon has had a big role to play, say experts. In 2022, the state had recorded only 767 heatwave cases in the entire season. This year, the cases have not yet ended.
The top 10 districts with the highest number of suspected heatstroke cases are mostly from Vidarbha.
Amravati, with 124 suspected heatstroke cases, Thane (153), Mumbai suburban (155), Latur (169), Nandurbar (173), Chandrapur (177), Nagpur (317), Wardha (334) and Raigad (412) districts have contribute to 76% of the total cases in the state this year.
Dr Nitin Ambadekar, director of health services for Maharashtra, said: “Monsoon was expected to arrive by mid-June. However, it has been delayed now and, so, the impact can be felt everywhere. Usually we see nominal cases being reported in June as monsoon covers the entire state by June. However, the delay has now raised temperatures across the state, leading to suspected heatstroke cases specifically in Vidarbha and Marathwada regions.”
The India Meteorological Department (IMD) has said that heatwave to severe heatwave conditions are likely to continue over east, east-central and east peninsular India till at least Wednesday.
Heatwave or severe heatwave conditions are very likely to continue in some/isolated pockets over Vidarbha, Chhattisgarh, Jharkhand, Odisha and Telangana for the next three days, the IMD had said on Sunday.
The scorching heatwave has led to several deaths in northern India.
Since June 15, more than 120 people have died in Ballia and Deoria districts of Uttar Pradesh, and nearly 50 deaths have been reported in Bihar.