‘In last 10 yrs, heat strokes killed over 2.5k individuals in UP & Bihar’

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Lucknow, June 23: While many regions of north India stayed unexpectedly cold and pleasant in May, the hot heat returned with a fury in June. According to estimates, 68 persons died in the Ballia district of Uttar Pradesh between June 14 and June 19.

On June 21, Deoria reported 53 probable heat stroke deaths in a 24-hour period. Heat strokes have also claimed the lives of at least 45 persons in Bihar.

“So many people across the state have lost lives because of the state government’s carelessness,” Samajwadi Party leader Akhilesh Yadav said of the UP government. “They should have alerted people about the impending heat wave,” he added. The figures, on the other hand, have been a source of controversy.

According to health officials, the dead patients were all old, and the majority of them had significant underlying illnesses.

During a meeting on June 22, the Health Ministry emphasised the absence of precise information from the ground and requested states to submit field-level data on the heatwave, including deaths and hospitalisations.

To investigate the prevalence of heat stroke, the statistics Intelligence Unit examined National Crime Records Bureau statistics on the number of heat stroke deaths in India, specifically in the states of Uttar Pradesh and Bihar.

According to the data, over 11,000 individuals died in India from heat stroke between 2012 and 2021. More than 1,000 and 1,500 people were killed in Bihar and Uttar Pradesh, respectively.

According to NCRB statistics, the highest number of heat stroke deaths in India in the previous 10 years for which data is available was 1,908 in 2015. UP reported 487 deaths in the same year, its highest number of casualties.

In Bihar, however, 86 people died as a result of the high heat that year. The year with the fewest heat stroke fatalities was 2021, when only 374 individuals died. Because of the high heat that year, 57 and 36 persons perished in Bihar and UP, respectively.

Gorakhpur, Deoria, Ballia, Azamgarh, Jaunpur, Varanasi, Chandauli, Mirzapur, Sonbhadra, Sant Ravidas Nagar, and Prayagraj are among the 12 districts in Uttar Pradesh that have received an orange alert from the India Meteorological Department.

On June 20, the IMD predicted that heatwaves will persist in parts of eastern Uttar Pradesh, Bihar, and Jharkhand, among other states.

On June 19, temperatures in numerous regions of Bihar exceeded 43 degrees Celsius, with Aurangabad registering the greatest maximum temperature of 44.7 degrees Celsius. “The state is currently experiencing a scorching heat wave.”

“The situation is being monitored by the Disaster Management Department,” stated Shahnawaz Alam, Minister of Disaster Management in Bihar. Orange alerts were issued in the districts of Bhojpur, Buxar, Arwal, Aurangabad, Rohtas, and Kaimur.

The Health Ministry issued a National Action Plan on Heat-Related Illness in July 2021. It describes the health risks caused by heat waves and how to deal with them. “I am confident that this action plan will be useful in managing and monitoring the health impact, and will shape our future course of action in building climate resilience,” Health Minister Mansukh Mandaviya stated at the time.