LAHORE - Parts of the country remained in the grip of severe heat wave on Monday with experts predicting the prevailing harsh weather conditions to persist during the next couple of days. Frequent tripping and unscheduled load shedding added to the woes of heat stricken people. Weather remained very hot and dry in most parts of the country. However, Rawalpindi, Malakand and Hazara divisions received scattered thundershowers. As monsoon incursions have started reaching upper parts of the country, increasing humidity has made the weather more oppressive. Pre monsoon rains are likely to decrease intensity of heat wave in upper parts from Tuesday evening. However, people in central and southern parts will continue to experience extremely hot weather conditions. Sibbi remained hottest place in the country where mercury rose as high as 48.5 degree Celsius. Maximum temperature in Bannu was recorded 47 C, Bhakkar 46.5 C, Dadu and Bahawalnagar 46 C, Okara, D G Khan, R Y Khan, Noor pur Thal, Mianwali, Risalpur, Sargodha and Jacobabad 45 C. In Lahore, maximum and minimum temperature was recorded 45 C and 31 C respectively. Relative humidity in the evening was recorded 25 per cent. People avoided unnecessarily coming out, decreasing traffic on otherwise busy roads at noon and in the afternoon. Lahore canal, as usual, attracted a large number of people including women and children. Not only youth but also elderly people were seen taking bath in the canal water. At certain places, even women were seen beating the heat by taking a dip in the mud coloured water. According to the experts, seasonal low lies over Balochistan and adjoining areas. Moist currents from Arabian Sea are penetrating into upper parts of the country. A shallow westerly wave is affecting upper parts of the country. The meteorological department has forecast mainly hot and dry weather for most parts of the country during the next couple of days. However, rain-thundershower associated with gusty/dust raising winds is expected at scattered places in Kashmir, Islamabad, Rawalpindi, Sargodha, Gujranwala, Lahore, Malakand, Hazara, Peshawar divisions and Gilgit-Baltistan. On Monday, Rawalakot received 13 mm rain, Garhidupatta 09 mm, Mirkhani and Kotli 08 mm each, Murree 07 mm, Balakot 04 mm, Dir and Zhob 02 mm each.This news was published in The Nation newspaper. Read complete newspaper of 17-Jun-2014 here.