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Intense heat grips Andhra, mercury in Hyderabad touches 44

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Hyderabad, May 23 (IANS) Andhra Pradesh sizzled Thursday with the day temperature in most of the towns crossing 43 degree Celsius while the mercury in the state capital touched 44, the season's highest.

According to met department, Rentachintala in Guntur district was the hottest place in the state with the maximum temperature of 47 degrees. Ramagundam in Karimnagar district recorded 46 and Nizamabad 45.5 degrees Celsius.

Severe heat wave conditions prevailed in most parts of coastal Andhra and Telangana regions.

Many towns virtually turned into a furnace. Kavali in Nellore district, Nandigama in Krishna district, Ongole in Prakasam district, Hanamkonda, Medak and Nalgonda recorded maximum temperature of 45 degrees Celsius. It was 44 in Vijayawada, Adilabad and Bhadrachalam.

Streets wore a deserted look in Hyderabad, Vijayawada, Guntur, Nizamabad, Adilabad and other towns as people remained indoors to escape the blazing sun. People began feeling the heat at 9 a.m. with many old timers saying never experienced such a severe heat.

Scorching heat continued in Hyderabad with temperature touching 44 degrees Thursday. It was the highest temperature of the season. In 2010, the city had recorded 45 degrees, a record in 20 years.

The met officials said the heat wave was caused by the hot winds blowing from Rajasthan and the northwest. They warned that the heat wave would continue over the next two days.

India Meterological Department has warned that heat wave would prevail in Telangana and coastal Andhra for next 48 hours.

With no low-pressure area in the Bay of Bengal, Visakhapatnam Cyclone Warning Centre said the temperature would remain high till monsoon's arrival, which is likely in the second week of June.

The heat wave hit normal life in several towns. Majority of the people remained indoors to escape the fury of heat. The daily wage earners were the worst hit while others postponed their works to evenings. Those who came out had their heads covered with scarves and caps.

Scheduled and unscheduled power cuts imposed by the power distribution companies added to people's woes. In Hyderabad, people continue to experience daily one-and-half hour power cut while in town and villages, the duration ranges from two to four hours.

Roadside shops selling ice-creams, cool drinks, sugarcane juice and coconut water did a brisk business.

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