The mercury has been rising across the southern states and as a natural consequence there are now numerous articles available on how to cope with the sweltering heat. We decided to go out and ask people who have to work under the punishing sun all day long, how they manage to beat the heat in order to keep doing their jobs.
Parked under the welcome shade cast by trees, Latheef is taking a breather from driving his rickshaw in the scorching afternoon sun. Latheef has been driving a rickshaw in the city for 45 years now and he says he hasnâ€™t experienced such heat until now. â€śEarlier I used to drink 2 glasses of water a day, now-a-days even three bottles are not enough.â€ť Afternoons are peak time for his business as nobody wants to walk but that means no respite for Latheef from the heat.
30-year-old Mohammad Jahangir is a Swiggy delivery executive who delivers around 8 to 10 orders from 12 pm to 4pm. Mohammad says what makes him happy is when customers offer him water, juices and butter milk when he delivers the food. â€śDriving in this hot weather is really difficult so I frequently take liquids, juices and sugar cane juices to cope up with this heat.â€ť
Bhanu Nagendra, a Constable at Nampally Traffic Police Station says that despite the high temperatures there is no escape from the work. But constables like Bhanu are provided butter milk, helmets, sunglasses every summer by their seniors. They also often take breaks in between with the help of their colleagues to keep doing their work efficiently.
45-year old Lingappa, who works as a construction worker near Cubbon park road said that a can of water is given by the supervisor for every five workers each day. But by the time it's 4 PM the water gets over. Some times in the afternoon or after lunch workers walk to a shady place and take a nap.
â€śGetting that lunch break is difficult. Our supervisors wouldn't let us go unless we finish the target by 1pm.â€ť
However Lingappa, who has come from Raichur, which is known to be one of the backward districts in Karnataka says that life is easier in Bengaluru than at his home. "Getting a mug of clean drinking water is difficult there. At least here the supervisors ensure that workers get their share of water every day," he said.
Pramod, who runs a second-hand bookstore by the roadside at Swaraj round in Thrissur, patiently waits underneath a tree as customers browse through the collection of books. â€śI manage to sit under the shade, but because of the heat, people are no more interested to spend time checking for the books they want to buy and have grown impatient.â€ť
Situated very close to a bus stop, Pramod has never had a dearth of customers. But the summer heat seems to have taken its toll on peopleâ€™s energy levels.