Kolkata, April 8 (IANS) Sweltering summer heat is back in Kolkata, and before time. With the mercury already touching the 40 degrees Celsius mark and the weatherman predicting no immediate respite from the heat, the citizens are bracing for grueling times.
No rain or shower has been forecast for the next two days by the weather department.
The average temperature in April hovers around 36 degrees Celsius in Kolkata. Over the past 10 years, the mercury has soared this high only twice before.
On April 9, 2010, the maximum temperature recorded was 40.1 degrees. And on April 19, 2009, it went up to a scorching 41.2 degrees Celsius.
"There's no cyclonic circulation. This is one of the main reasons for such heat around the state. There's no chance of rain for the next 24 to 48 hours (Tuesday and Wednesday)," an official of the Regional Meteorological Centre, Alipore, told IANS.
Five western districts have been warned of a heat wave - West Midnapore, Birbhum, Purulia, Bankura and parts of Burdwan, due to the impact of hot northwesterly and westerly winds. This, in turn, is affecting Kolkata's temperature.
The city and its surroundings have also not experienced any nor'westers (local storms that lash the city in the evenings leading to a cooling effect) this year.
"Eta toh kalboisakhir somoy, jhor bristi toh hocchei nah, sudhu gorom bere choleche (It is the time of the Nor'westers', but there's no sign of such storms or rain, it is only the heat that is rising)," said Prabhat Das, a local businessman.
The sale of ice creams, cold drinks and fresh lime water have become brisk with the rise in temperatures. The demand is so high that many shops are hard pressed to meet it.
"Pehle, din mein 40 glass bechte the, ab 100, 120 glass din mein bech rahen hain (I used to sell 40 glasses of fresh lime water(nimbu pani) daily, before. But now its around 100 to 120 glasses per day)," said Ranjan Bihari, a nimbu-pani seller.