New Delhi: Extreme weather events claimed 233 lives and damaged 0.95 million hectare of cropland in the country in the first four months of this year, according to a report by the Centre for Science and Environment (CSE).

Such events impacted 32 states and Union territories this time as against 27 last year.

Rajasthan and Maharashtra reported the maximum number of extreme weather days (30 each), followed by Himachal Pradesh (28) and Bihar and Madhya Pradesh (27).

Delhi reported extreme weather on 12 days as against 25 during the period last year.

Between January and April 2022, extreme weather events claimed 86 lives and damaged 0.03 million hectare of cropland, according to the report.

Lightning and storms occurred on 58 days this time as compared to 35 days during the corresponding period in 2022. Most of these events occurred in March and April.

The country recorded just 15 heatwave days in the first four months of 2023 as compared to 40 days last year.

Meteorologists attribute fewer heatwave days to frequent western disturbances — weather systems that originate in the Mediterranean region and bring unseasonal rainfall to northwest India — during March and April.

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India experienced extreme weather events on 314 of the 365 days in 2022. The events claimed 3,026 lives and damaged 1.96 million hectares (ha) crop area.

Extreme weather, climate and water-related events caused 573 disasters in India between 1970 and 2021 that claimed 1,38,377 lives, according to data from the World Meteorological Department, a specialised agency of the United Nations.

Also read: SW Monsoon? IMD predicts respite for Northeast India, issues warning

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