Heatwave has claimed 56 lives in Bihar with 32 deaths being reported from Aurangabad, 7 from Nawada and 17 from Gaya, authorities said Sunday.
Confirming the deaths in Aurangabad, Civil Surgeon Dr Surendra Prasad Singh said that the toll could rise further as the number of patients being admitted in hospital with heatwave-related symptoms was increasing.
Nawada District Magistrate Kaushal Kumar said seven deaths have taken place in the region and 11 patients have been referred to Pawapuri Medical College.
Gaya-based ANM Medical College and Hospital Superintendent Dr Vijay Krishna Prasad said, "11 people have died due to the heatwave in the past two days whereas six patients were brought dead to the hospital. Forty-four people are being treated in the hospital."
He said, "The hospital administration has made necessary arrangements for the treatment of the patients. A sufficient number of beds have been made available. Manpower has also been augmented in the hospital. Medicines are available in required quantities."
According to Dr Krishna, most of the people admitted in the hospital are from Gaya district and the district administration has been apprised of the situation. "Some patients are from Chatra district in Jharkhand," he added.
Union Health Minister Harsh Vardhan, who arrived in Patna on Sunday, called the deaths "unfortunate". "It's very unfortunate that people have died due to heat stroke. I advise people to avoid moving out of the house until the temperatures reduce. Intense heat affects the brain and leads to various health issues," he said.
Earlier, Chief Minister Nitish Kumar expressed grief over the heatwave deaths and announced an ex-gratia payment of Rs 4 lakh to the next of the kin of the deceased. He also directed all district magistrates to take precautionary measures in the wake of severe heatwave condition in the state.
All schools in Patna will remain closed till June 19 in view of the prevailing weather condition.
According to the weather department, maximum temperatures were markedly above normal (5.1 degree Celsius or more) at many places in Bihar on Saturday. On Sunday, Gaya (45.2 degrees Celsius) and Patna (45.8 degrees Celsius) were among the hottest places in the country, according to private weather forecaster Skymet.
(This story has not been edited by Business Standard staff and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)