More than 120 people have died in rain-related incidents in India in the past four days. Of these, 93 deaths have been reported from Uttar Pradesh since Thursday, while the toll in Bihar has climbed to 29.
The weather department has predicted more rain in several states in the next two days. The Union Ministry of Home Affairs is closely monitoring the situation in Uttar Pradesh, Bihar and Jharkhand, Minister of State for Home Affairs Nityanand Rai told ANI.
India Meteorological Department Director General M Mohapatra on Sunday said monsoon would retreat later than normal this year. This is the first time since 1960 that monsoon will remain active till mid-October. Monsoon usually begins on June 1 and ends on September 30.
Three people were killed in Jharkhand’s Dumka district in a wall collapse after heavy rains in the state, PTI reported. At least 13 deaths were reported on Saturday from Uttarakhand, Madhya Pradesh and Rajasthan. Three women drowned in Gujarat after their car washed away in Rajkot district on Sunday.
Almost all areas of Patna are under knee-deep water, reported PTI. Normal life has been affected as hospitals, medical stores and other shops are submerged. The capital city has received a “totally unexpected” 200 mm of rainfall since Friday evening, Disaster Management Department Principal Secretary Pratyay Amrit told PTI. Schools in Patna have been closed till Tuesday.
The state’s disaster management department said six deaths were reported in Gaya district with five of them being killed after a wall collapsed in the last few days. One person drowned in an overflowing river. In Jehanabad district, a three-year-old was also killed in a wall collapse due to heavy downpour.
A one-year-old girl and three women died when a tree fell on their autorickshaw in Danapur on the outskirts of Patna. Bhagalpur and Bhabhua reported three deaths each. In Nawada, three people are said to be missing. Dozens of villages in Muzaffarpur, West Champaran, East Champaran, Darbhanga, Gaya, and Bhojpur districts were also reported to be inundated.
Union Minister Ravi Shankar Prasad reached Bihar on Monday to monitor the situation. “I have had meetings with our MLAs & officials,” Prasad told ANI. “I am informed that all gates of Farakka Barrage have been opened [and] bigger pumps from Coal India will be made available. NDRF has informed that there are enough boats.”
The state government has asked the Indian Air Force for two helicopters to help airdrop food packets and medicines in the flood-affected areas of Patna, reported ANI. Prasad added that a helicopter had already reached while another from Gorakhpur is expected soon.
The National Disaster Response Force has deployed boats in some areas to rescue residents. Nineteen NDRF teams have been deployed across the state, of which five are in Rajendra Nagar and Kankarbagh areas of Patna. “People are facing difficulties due to water-logging here,” Kumar Balchand, NDRF deputy commandant, told ANI. “We are distributing the relief material to people.”
Bihar Deputy Chief Minister Sushil Modi, who was stranded at his residence in Patna, was rescued by NDRF personnel, reported ANI.
NDRF Director General SN Pradhan said the situation was unprecedented. “It’s almost like a cloud burst,” he told ANI. “Impact is mainly due to water logging.”
The heavy rainfall also hampered rail services. The East Central Railway said almost 30 trains were cancelled and many others were either short-terminated or diverted. Train services on the Ballia-Chhapra section of the North Eastern Railway was also disrupted on Sunday. Seven trains were cancelled and six diverted, said NER Public Relations Officer Mahesh Gupta.
A flood warning has been issued in 28 districts, said State Relief commissioner GS Priyadarshi. The Ganga is flowing above the danger level in Ghazipur and Ballia districts while Kuano river is flowing above the danger mark in Gonda district.
The worst-affected areas in Uttar Pradesh are Ballia, Varanasi, Jaunpur districts. Chief Minister Adityanath has asked authorities to not grant leaves to government officials, reported NDTV.
Over 900 prisoners are expected to be shifted out of a district jail in Ballia as it was flooded, according to PTI. “After four days of continuous rain the jail has been flooded,” Additional District Magistrate of Ballia Ram Ashray said. “There are heavy floods outside also, because of which we are not able to pump water outside jail buildings.”
“The rain has entered three barracks. We have been told to shift 500 of the 950 prisoners from here to the jail in Azamgarh,” he said, adding the remaining prisoners will be shifted to a jail in Ambedkarnagar district.
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