65 more die of heat wave in Andhra, Telangana, toll crosses 1,400

Hyderabad: Andhra Pradesh and Telangana continued to reel under a heat wave that claimed 65 lives on Thursday, taking the toll to over 1,400 in the two Telugu states, officials said.

While 35 people succumbed to sunstroke in Andhra Pradesh, 30 died in Telangana on Thursday.

No respite from the blistering heat was in sight as both states sizzled with the highest temperature of 47 degrees.

Khammam and Nizamabad in Telangana recorded 47 degree Celsius, as did Nandigama and Ongole in Andhra Pradesh.

According to the Hyderabad Meteorological Centre, though rains brought down temperature in some parts of coastal Andhra and Rayalaseema region, severe heat wave conditions continued in Andhra Pradesh

The meteorologists have warned that the heat wave may continue for another two days under the impact of dry winds from northwesterly direction. Though isolated rains are likely, this may not provide a respite from the heat wave.

The maximum temperature at most of the places in both states remained three to seven degrees Celsius higher than the average.

The authorities had confirmed 1,367 deaths till Wednesday night. Andhra Pradesh accounted for 1,027 deaths while 340 people died in Telangana.

Almost all the deaths were reported during the last eight days.

Poor people, especially the homeless, construction workers, rickshaw pullers and street vendors were the worst hit by the heat wave.

According to officials, the majority of the victims were the elderly and children. The Andhra Pradesh government has already announced compensation of Rs.1 lakh each for the families of the victims.

Telangana's minister for panchayat raj and information technology K. Tarakarama Rao told reporters on Thursday that the state government is very concerned about the deaths caused by the heat wave.

He said the state government received certain queries about the situation from the union health ministry and they would respond to the same.

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