Residents of Delhi were faced with sweltering heat on Monday, the hottest day in two years, as the mercury rose to almost 45 degrees Celsius, reported The Times of India.

The temperature in Safdarjung area jumped to 44.4 degrees Celsius while in Palam, it was 45.4 degrees Celsius. Last year, the highest temperature recorded at Safdarjung was 44 degrees Celsius on May 3, while the highest in 2015 was 45.5 degrees, recorded on May 26 that year.

Temperatures will continue to hover above 45 degrees in some parts of Delhi on Tuesday. However, the Indian Meteorological Department has predicted some relief in the form of thunderstorms on Tuesday evening and Wednesday night. “There won’t be any drastic change in weather at least during the day on Tuesday, a senior official of the Regional Weather Forecasting Centre told Hindustan Times. “We are, however, expecting some duststorm and thunderstorm later in the evening, which might help mercury dip by a few degrees.”

Explaining the reason for the thunderstorm, the official said a looming western disturbance over Jammu and Kashmir may provide some relief from the heat. Another Met official said that duststorms and thunderstorms could hit the city and its adjoining districts between Tuesday evening and Wednesday night.

The heat wave is likely to pass over the next few days after more such thunderstorms later in the week. The temperature is likely to drop to around 40 degrees Celsius by the end of the week. But the official warned of another spell of intense heat soon after.

Other parts of North India

The highest temperature recorded on Monday was in Uttar Pradesh’s Banda, where it was 47 degrees Celsius. Dehradun was also blazing, at 39.2 degrees Celsius, which is five degrees above normal for the city. In Rajasthan, Churu was the hottest, with mercury touching 46 degrees Celsius.

Even in the lower hills in Himachal Pradesh, it was extremely hot. Una, in the Shivalik foothills, was the hottest with a temperature of 43 degrees Celsius on Monday.

In the south

Similarly, Chennai also recorded its highest temperature this month on Monday when the temperature jumped to 41.1 degrees Celsius, reported The Hindu. This is four notches above the average temperature for the season. Parts of Telangana also experienced a heat wave, with Adilabad district recording a temperature of 45.1 degrees Celsius.

Director of Area Cyclone Warning Centre, Chennai, S. Balachandran explained the reason behind the soaring heat. He said strong westerly winds bring hot air and that couple with clear sky and a delay in the onset of sea breeze led to the rise in the mercury level.

Weathermen have predicted similar hot days ahead. Balachandran told The Hindu that the mercury will climb beyond the 40-degree mark during the day till Wednesday.