Over 30 persons, including 21 officials who were on election duty, died in Uttar Pradesh and Bihar in the past 48 hours amid severe heat in the region.

Eighteen deaths were reported from Bihar, while 13 fatalities took place in Uttar Pradesh.

In Bihar, eight poll personnel were among the 18 who died due to heat-related illnesses in the past 48 hours, The Indian Express reported on Friday.

Eleven deaths due to ailments caused by the heat were reported from the Rohtas district and six were recorded from Bhojpur, the State Emergency Operation Centre said. One death was reported from the Buxar district.

Five persons among those who died in Rohtas were deployed for the ongoing Lok Sabha elections, as were two in Bhojpur. The person who died in Buxar was also on poll duty.

Polling is set to take place in eight out of the 40 parliamentary seats in the state on Saturday in the last phase of the election.

Bihar has been grappling with heatwave conditions over the past few days. Temperatures crossed 44 degree Celsius in many parts of the state on Thursday.

On Wednesday, the state government ordered schools, coaching institutes and anganwadi centres to be closed until June 8. The announcement came amid reports of several students at schools in the Sheikhpura, Begusarai, Muzaffarpur and East Champaran districts fainting during the day as temperatures soared.

In Uttar Pradesh, 13 poll personnel deployed in the Mirzapur district died after reporting high fever and high blood pressure, PTI reported. Seven of them were home guard jawans, three were sanitation workers, one was a clerk posted at the Chief Medical Officer’s office, one was a consolidation officer and one was a peon with the home guards.

Raj Bahadur Kamal, the principal of the district’s Maa Vindhyavasini Autonomous State Medical College, said that the exact reason for the deaths was being ascertained.

Mizapur is among 13 constituencies in Uttar Pradesh where polls will be held on Saturday in the final phase of the election on Saturday.

Other parts of the country

The India Meteorological Department on Friday said that severe heatwave conditions were likely in parts of Delhi, Punjab, Haryana, Chandigarh, Uttar Pradesh, Uttarakhand, Rajasthan, Odisha, Himachal Pradesh, Madhya Pradesh, Chhattisgarh, Bihar and Jharkhand.

A severe heatwave is declared when the daytime maximum temperature of a place exceeds the normal temperature by 6.5 degree Celsius or more.

This comes as the Delhi government moved the Supreme Court seeking directions to the governments of Haryana, Uttar Pradesh and Himachal Pradesh to provide additional water to the national capital for one month amid a severe shortage.

The national capital’s water reserves have been dwindling amid the heatwave.

A day earlier, the Rajasthan High Court said that heatwaves should be declared a national calamity after noting deaths that have occurred due to the extreme weather this month.