Rajasthan is hit with four hours of blackouts in its factories, becoming at least the third state to shut down industrial activity in an attempt to cater for growing electricity demand amid a devastating heatwave.
India’s western states of Gujarat and Andhra Pradesh restricted industrial spending this month as demand for air conditioning reached peak levels and economic activity started picking up after the end of restrictions that have been imposed by coronavirus.
Rajasthan has also imposed four-hour rural power cuts, leaving thousands of families across the desert state facing extreme temperatures, with an upcoming peak in the summer heat ahead of a month of cooling monsoon rains.
Maximum demand for electricity in India jumped to a record high Wednesday and is expected to climb by up to a tenth next month.
The Indian Meteorological Agency warned of more severe heat wave in the next few days.
The unprecedented heat places huge risks on millions of workers who work in construction, agriculture, and factory buildings.
Solar storms have killed thousands of Indian people in the past.
Industrial disturbances and widespread blackouts are also bad news for India, as economic activity is only just picking up after months of stagnation amid coronavirus outages.