In April, 330 million people — more than the population of the United States — in India were living under severe drought caused by a heat wave. By May 20, the heat had intensified to cross 124 degrees Fahrenheit in the western state of Rajasthan, the highest-ever recorded temperature in India. As the country waited for relief from the oppressive heat, the monsoon finally arrived in the second week of June, bringing rains, thunder and lightning.
Reports from eastern and central states of the country in the last few days suggest over a hundred people have died in lightning strikes, with dozens dying in the last 24 hours alone. Most of the deaths Tuesday were reported from the eastern state of Bihar.