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International relations

India downplays wheat export worries as heat waves threaten yields

Delhi says it won't curb shipments amid supply disruptions caused by Ukraine war

A wheat farmer in the central Indian state of Madhya Pradesh: The country has endured unusual heat waves around harvest time.   © Reuters

NEW DELHI -- Record-breaking heat waves have hit wheat production in India, but officials are downplaying concerns the scorching conditions could hamper plans to fill a global supply gap linked to the war in Ukraine.

May and June are typically the hottest months in India, but this year the country endured its warmest March since 1901, when record-keeping began. April was the third-hottest in 122 years, with temperatures soaring above 46 C in several places. The Meteorological Department has predicted fresh periods of intense heat this month as well.

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