Delhi experienced its hottest day in March in 76 years on Monday, as the mercury rose to 40.1 degrees Celsius, PTI reported, quoting the India Meteorological Department. “It was the hottest day in March since March 31, 1945, when Delhi recorded a maximum of 40.5 degrees Celsius,” Kuldeep Srivastava, the head of the IMD’s regional forecasting centre told PTI.

Srivastava said that low wind speed and plenty of sun due to clear skies over the last three to four days led to the weather condition, pushing the temperature eight notches above normal, PTI reported.

Monday’s maximum temperature also flagged a “severe heatwave” in the city, which is declared if the mercury goes past 40 degrees Celsius and is 6.5 degrees Celsius more than the normal, PTI reported. A “heatwave” is declared when the departure is at least 4.5 notches above normal.

However, some relief is likely on the cards for people in the National Capital Region and neighbouring states as the IMD on Monday predicted dust storms with speeds of up to 30-40 kilometres per hour in the region over the next few days. Srivastava said the strong winds were likely to bring down temperature in Delhi to around 38 degrees Celsius on Tuesday.