Free Press Journal

9 killed in rain-related incidents in Marathwada


srains Annual monsoon rains have progressed to parts of western and central India, easing fears of millions of desperate farmers after two straight years of drought, the weather department said. Farmers rely on the monsoon rains, which hit the Kerala coast every year and then sweep across the country, to water their crops and replenish dams and reservoirs. The arrival of the monsoon is always keenly watched in India, but even more so this year as much of the country reels from the drought. / AFP PHOTO / INDRANIL MUKHERJEE

Mumbai: The retreating monsoon has claimed nine lives in Marathwada region of Maharashtra with five killed in flash floods, officials said today.

While four persons from Jalna and Nanded districts of the region died after they were struck by lightning, the other five from Beed and Latur districts drowned in flash floods yesterday following heavy rains, officials from Marathwada Divisional Commissionerate said.

The victims are yet to be identified.

The monsoon withdrawl, which is otherwise said to be beneficial for pulses production, brought some heavy spells to Marathwada this time, causing flash floods in arid areas. Some areas in Beed district recorded more than 100 mm rainfall on Sunday in less than 12 hours disrupting normal life.

“It is a rare phenomenon. Hence we sought the help of National Disaster Response team for evacuation and rescue operations,” Navalkishor Ram, Beed District Collector told today.

Also, as most of the rivers including Bindusara and Manjara have shallow beds, water is overflowing resulting in crop loss over 5-7 lakh hectares in the region. Besides, flooding has led to uprooting of crops, which has come as an irreparable loss to farmers.

The IMD had predicted more rains in Maharashtra in the first week of October with low pressure formation over the Telengana region.