KARACHI: Hot weather persisted on Thursday as the mercury once again touched 41° Celsius on Thursday, the ‘real feel’ was 45°C due to the absence of sea breeze and prevalence of dry northwestern winds.
The past five days have seen a rise in temperatures in the usually cool Karachi due to the low pressure areas being created off the Indian Coast in the Arabian Sea.
There was a rush at roadside stalls where citizens in the metropolis tried to beat the heat with soft drinks, gola ganda and ice cream.
Muhammad Raheel, a salesman, stopped by a street side vendor in Saddar on his way home from work to have a refreshing drink. While sipping an ice cold glass of lemon soda, he said this is the strangest weather he has ever seen in his 30 years of living in the city.
We expect a little dry and cool weather in this month, he said, stirring the ice cubes in his glass. This kind of heatwave is different from the one we witnessed in the summer this year, he explained.
Vendors selling ice cream, gola ganda and other chilled treats outside schools have vanished, as the usual weather change at the end of September negates the need for chilled drinks. However, with the return of warm weather, the vendors have also returned to their stations outside schools and colleges, ready to make some money.
A gola ganda vendor, Gul Ali Bangash, said that vendors in the city usually switch from selling icy treats to dry fruit as winter approaches, but the return of warmer weather has given them an opportunity to earn some more money off citizens looking to beat the heat.
But while beating the heat, citizens may find themselves in hot water as health issues go. Former chairperson of the food and science department at the University of Karachi, Abid Hasnain, said that it is very dangerous to consume these drinks as the water and ice used to make them is contaminated and dirty.
He added that viral fevers, throat and nasal infections are often the result of people consuming these food items when the weather changes.
He advised residents of Karachi to opt for homemade drinks instead of going for drinks that are akin to slow poison for the human body.
On the other hand, the spokesperson for the Pakistan Meteorological department in Karachi, Dr Abdul Rashid, said that the prevalent heatwave will be weakened from today (Friday), as the southwestern sea breeze will resume in the city while the temperature from Saturday will decrease to 36°C.