MUMBAI/AHMEDABAD/BHOPAL: Heavy rains continue to lash several parts of the country, taking lives, damaging property, and disrupting livelihood. In Maharashtra, 89 people have died while 68 others have been injured and four people are missing due to the heavy and continuous downpour.
In Gujarat, 14 people have been killed in rain-related incidents in the last 24 hours, as heavy showers ravaged parts of south Gujarat and Kutch-Saurashtra regions. Over 31,000 people have been evacuated so far this rainy season in Gujarat, officials said on Wednesday.
In the last 13 days, many regions of Maharashtra, including Mumbai, have received very heavy rainfall, leaving 249 villages badly hit. A total of 7,796 people have been evacuated from different parts of the state. As many as 1,368 houses have got partially damaged while 44 are completely damaged.
The state government has opened 35 relief camps for the displaced people. Maximum damage has taken place in Gadchiroli, Palghar and Nagpur districts. Four landslide incidents have been reported, leading to the death of four people.
In Madhya Pradesh, Betul and Harda districts have been the hit the worst by heavy rainfall, with many rivers being in spate. Six members of a family, led by 65-year-old Madhukar Patil who was on his way to Nagpur to drop his daughter and grandson, were swept away in a flooded nullah on Tuesday evening. The family was travelling in a SUV, and decided to proceed on an overflowing culvert in the Kelvad area of Nagpur’s Saoner area (located on Chhindwara-Betul-Nagour junction), but were swept away along with the vehicle.
The government machinery in the affected states is monitoring the situation closely. Maharashtra Chief Minister Eknath Shinde has asked the administration to extend all possible help to people who are trapped at various places.
Gujarat Chief Minister Bhupendra Patel on Wednesday reviewed the situation in five districts of the state affected by heavy rain. A red alert was sounded via the chief minister’s dashboard after aerial inspection. Patel has instructed the administration to give Rs. 4 lakh to all those who have died in rain-related incidents. State Disaster minister Rajendra Trivedi said 31 civilians have lost thir life since July 7 this monsoon season in the state.
The India Meteorological Department (IMD) has warned of heavy to very heavy rainfall in Maharashtra in Palghar, Raigad, Ratnagiri, Nasik, Pune, Kolhapur and Gadchiroli over the next three days. In the last 24 hours, Palghar district has received the highest (74.6 mm) rainfall, followed by Raigad (72.7 mm) and Thane (70.08 mm). Mumbai has received 24.0 mm rainfall. In Pune, the Pimpri Chinchwad Municipal Corporation issued notices, asking private companies, including IT firms, to have their employees work from home for the next two days. In Mumbai, the BMC has asked people not to go near the seaside.
The government has declared a ‘red alert’ in Junagadh, Gir Somnath, Dangs, Navsari, and Valsad districts of Gujarat. Meanwhile, in MP, during the last 24 hours, various areas of Betul district reported rainfall up to 250 mm, including Ghodadongri (250 mm), Chicholi (232 mm), and Bhimpur (195 mm).
Owing to incessant rains since Monday, the Machna river is in spate, cutting off Shahpur town and adjoining areas from other parts of Betul district. Road connectivity has also been lost between Betul and Bhopal, while movement of vehicles on the Betul-Indore state highway and Betul-Khandwa road has also been hit adversely.
In Harda district, heavy rains have paralysed normal life, forcing the closure of schools on Wednesday. Water flow has increased in Ajnar river, while the mighty Narmada is also rising. The IMD has sounded a red alert of very heavy rains in all districts of Narmadapuram division over the next 24 hours.
Leaders given mud bath to appease rain god
Lucknow: With monsoon playing truant in eastern Uttar Pradesh, the women of Maharajganj district on Tuesday night sought to appease the rain god by giving a mud bath to BJP MLA Jai Mangal Kanaujiya and Municipal Council chairman Krishna Gopal Jaiswal. As part of the ritual, the women also sang folk songs to please Indra Devta. “People are suffering in this sultry weather. Crops are drying up. This is a ritual based on an old belief, so we decided to be a part of it if it helps in any way,” Kanaujiya said.