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Indian Heat-wave Death Toll Passes 1,800

  • VOA News

Indian vendors selling onions rest on a sidewalk under the shade of a tree on a hot summer day in Hyderabad, India, Monday, May 25, 2015.

Indian vendors selling onions rest on a sidewalk under the shade of a tree on a hot summer day in Hyderabad, India, Monday, May 25, 2015.

The death toll from a massive heat wave in India has risen to more than 1,800 people, officials said Friday.

Most of the victims of the dizzying temperatures have been in the southern states of Andhra Pradesh and Telangana.

Officials said the high death toll is likely because heatstroke disproportionately affects the poor and homeless, who are less likely to receive hospital care.

Indian authorities have urged people to stay in the shade, cover their heads and drink plenty of water.

Temperatures have hovered around 43 Celsius (109 F) and higher for a week.

Record temperatures have been seen in a number of places, officials said.

People across India have complained about water shortages and scorched crops.

Thousands of water tankers were delivering supplies to more than 4,000 villages and hamlets facing acute water shortages in the central state of Maharashtra, the Press Trust of India news agency reported.

In New Delhi, the capital, the demand for electricity for operating air conditioners has drained the power grid, leaving thousands of people without power.

Monsoon rains are expected in the south in the next few days before sweeping across the country.

Some material for this report came from AP.

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