The normal life in the northeastern region has been affected due to heat wave in several areas and deficit pre-monsoon rains, officials said on Monday.
According to the India Meteorological Department (IMD), the maximum temperature in several N-E states, especially Assam, Mizoram and Tripura, since the past one week is hovering between 35 degrees Celsius and 38 degrees Celsius — two-five degrees above the normal for this time of the season.
The IMD, since March 1, also recorded 36 mm deficit pre-monsoon (March to May) rainfall in the seven N-E states, excluding Sikkim.
The Arunachal Pradesh meteorological sub-division recorded highest 47 mm deficient pre-monsoon rainfall, followed by Assam and Meghalaya sub-division with 33 mm and Nagaland-Manipur-Mizoram-Tripura sub-division 28 mm.
Sikkim and adjoining areas have recorded 152 mm pre-monsoon rainfall since March 1.
IMD Director Dilip Saha said in view of deep depressions over the Indian Ocean and adjoining Bay of Bengal, and subsequent cyclone ‘Fani’, the heat wave had continued in the mountainous northeastern region.
“After the end of the cyclone’s affect, the wind pattern is likely to change and the heat wave is expected to subside. We expect the situation to normalise within two-three days,” Saha told IANS.
According to the IMD official, cyclone ‘Fani’ has been gaining strength in the southeast Bay of Bengal and is likely to intensify into a very severe cyclonic storm on Tuesday.
Agricultural officials in Assam, Mizoram and Tripura said various summer crops would be affected due to the deficit pre-monsoon rainfall. “If the rain does not occur in the next few days, the damage to the summer crops would be much larger,” agricultural expert Samar Mitra told IANS.
The deficit in rainfall also resulted in water scarcity, including supply of drinking water.
Tripura Drinking Water and Sanitation Department Chief Engineer Baishapayan Chakraborty said the department had been providing drinking water through tankers in the scarcity-prone areas as well as remote, isolated hamlets and tribal areas.
“We are setting up deep tube wells in the areas where the level of ground water has gone down, mostly in the hilly areas,” Chakraborty told IANS.
The Health Departments in the region have been alerted and suggested to take precautionary measures besides organising special health camps to tackle the seasonal diseases.