New Delhi :
Several parts of the country continued to reel under severe heat wave conditions with major cities including the national capital today registering temperatures above 40 degrees Celsius. In Delhi, the mercury settled at 40.6 degrees Celsius, four notches above the normal. The humidity level in the air oscillated between 22 per cent and 65 per cent.
Odisha and West Bengal too faced scorching weather as temperatures hovered around 45 degree Celsius in most parts.
With the IMD predicting severe heatwave conditions for at least three days from Thursday, the Odisha government today extended school holidays till April 26 and decided to continue mid-day-meal scheme in drought-affected areas even during the summer vacation.
The mercury also soared in several cities in Uttar Pradesh with Lucknow posting 42.6 degrees Celsius and Allahabad scorching at 45.2 degrees Celsius.
Among other cities in Uttar Pradesh, Varanasi reeled under 43.4 degrees Celsius, Sultanpur at 44 degrees Celsius and Kanpur 42.4 degrees Celsius.
In southern India, Adilabad, Anamakonda and Nizmabad in Telangana scorched under 43 degrees Celsius though the weatherman has predicted light to moderate shower for the next two days.
Hisar in Haryana was the hottest place in the plains at 40.5 degrees Celsius as maximum temperatures hovered above normal limits at most places in the state.
In neighboring Punjab, barring Amritsar which recorded a high of 33.2 degrees Celsius, down two notches, most other places experienced hot weather conditions.
Residents of capital city Chandigarh also experienced the harsh weather at 39.1 degrees Celsius, up five notches than normal limits.
Ludhiana recorded a high of 39.1 degrees Celsius, up three notches, Patiala, too, had a hot day at 38.7 degrees Celsius, three degrees more than normal limits.
The MeT Department has forecast light rains or thundershowers at isolated places in Haryana and Punjab until tomorrow.
In Rajasthan, Kota was recorded as the hottest place in the state recording a maximum of 41.5 degree Celsius followed by Churu which registered 41.3 degrees Celsius.