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82 more die in Pakistan heat wave


Islamabad : The current heat wave in Pakistan has claimed at least 82 more lives, bringing the death toll up to 192, news reports and officials said Tuesday.

Hundreds more people were hospitalised with heat stroke and gastroenteritis, while thousands took to the streets in various parts of the country to protest against prolonged power cuts during the hot weather.

Seventy-five people died from the effects of the record-breaking heatwave in just the central province of Punjab, where the mercury hovered around 50 degrees Celsius on Monday, the Daily Express newspaper reported.

The temperature also touched 50 in the plain areas of North-West Frontier Province, claiming four lives in the district of Haripur, a health official told the newspaper. Three died in Khirpur district of southern province of Sindh.

The meteorological department registered a record maximum temperature of 52 degrees in Sibi but predicted some relief towards the end of the week.

"We are expecting rain in northern parts of Punjab province and Pakistan-administered Kashmir which will break the current unusual heatwave," the head of the state meteorological services Qamar-uz-Zaman Chaudhry, said.

Meanwhile, repeated power tripping in the southern port city of Karachi prompted residents to block roads with burning tires in several districts, as well as pelt police vans with stones and harrass the offices of local electricity providers.