New Delhi/Hyderabad/Patna/Chandigarh/Shimla/Jaipur: Unseasonal rains cooled down temperatures in several states on Saturday, giving people respite from searing heat wave, while mercury again rose in some north Indian states but the weathermen held out hope of respite soon.
The mercury fell by five to eight degrees in Hyderabad and other parts of Telangana, where rains continued for a second consecutive day. The light to moderate rains and thundershowers gave a huge relief to people reeling under intense heat wave, which so far claimed 249 lives in the state.
The highest temperature of 39.3 degrees Celsius was recorded in Hanamkonda. In almost all districts, the maximum temperature was below 35. In Hyderabad it was 32.2, the lowest in the state, while the city received eight cm rainfall - the highest for May in last 10 years.
The Hyderabad Meteorological Centre forecast light to moderate rains/thundershowers in most parts of the state over next five days, while warning that thunderstorms accompanied with squall/hail are likely to occur at isolated places. It made similar forecast for neighbouring Andhra Pradesh.
In Andhra Pradesh, rain occurred at isolated places in coastal areas and Rayalaseema. The highest temperature of 40.7 degrees Celsius was recorded in Kurnool.
Light to moderate rains and thunderstorm hit flood-prone Kosi region of Bihar, while two people died after struck by lightning during a thunderstorm in Madhepura, said an state disaster management department official.
Temperatures continued to be below 40 degrees Celsius in Patna and Gaya districts since early this week.
Meanwhile, the mercury continued to remain high in Punjab, Haryana and Chandigarh with temperatures two to four degrees above average.
The temperature in most places remained abnormally hgh due to prevailing dry weather, a Met official told IANS in Chandigarh.
Haryana's Hisar recorded a high of 40.3 degrees, while Ambala was hot at 38.1 degrees.
In Punjab, Patiala, the Sikh holy city of Amritsar and industrial hub Ludhiana were the hottest at 38.2 degrees, 38.4 degrees and 38.6 degrees respectively.
Chandigarh, at a high of 38.6 degrees, was a degree above average.
"There are chances of rain in Punjab, Haryana and Chandigarh from May 9 to 11, bringing some respite from the heat wave," said the official.
After two days of pleasant weather, the mercury again inched up in the desert state of Rajasthan where day temperatures ranged between 38 to 42 degrees.
Phaoldi was the hottest place in the state recording a maximum temperature of 43.5 degrees Celsius, while border towns of Jaisalmer and Barmer were scorching at 42.4 and 43 degree Celsius respectively.
Jaipur however was slightly better in comparison to other cities, with the maximum at 38.3 degrees, a notch below the average.
According to the weather office, day temperatures are likely to hover around present levels and rain and thunderstorms is likely to occur at isolated places in the state in next 24 hours.
In Delhi, the maximum was 38.1 degrees Celsius, a notch below the average and minimum temperature 25 degrees, average for this time of the season. Sunday may be a little hotter with the temperatures likely to be 39 and 27 degrees respectively.
The hills of Himachal Pradesh however continued to experience pleasant weather with some areas experiencing rainfall.
Shimla, situated at an altitude of 2,130 metres, recorded maximum of 23.4 degrees Celsius, whereas minimum was 13 degrees.
"Some of the areas in the state saw more rain, bringing the temperature down considerably," a weatherman told IANS.
Kasauli and Jogindernagar towns saw 21 mm of rainfall each, the maximum in the state.