PATNA: As many as 26 more people died in lightning strikes in various parts of Bihar on Thursday, officials said.
According to Police, five people died after being struck by lightning in Dulhin Bazaar of Patna alone. Besides, 7 people in Samastipur, 4 in East Champaran, 3 in each Samastipur and Katihar, 2 each in Sheohar and Madhepura and 1 in each Bettiah and Purnia districts died of lightning.
Most of the deceased, who died while working in the paddy fields, were either farmers or farm labourers.
The Meteorological Department on Wednesday had issued an alert for heavy rain and thunderstorms in the next 48 hours.
Principal Secretary of the Disaster Management Department, Pratay Amrit said that alerts were already issued in the districts where deaths occurred due to lightning.
“Now, the early warning system is providing alerts more than half an hour before the lightning strike over the cell phones of the people. Alerts are also being flashed in digital and electronic media constantly”, he said.
He said that ex-gratia of Rs 4 lakh has been announced by CM Nitish Kumar for the nearest kin of the deceased.
In the first incident of a lightning strike on June 25, as many as 107 people were killed in Bihar. Similarly, 10 people lost their lives in the second incident of lightning strikes on June 30.