31 dead as heavy monsoon rains inflict chaos in North India; Himachal Pradesh, Uttarakhand, J&K badly hit with flash floods, landslides

The India Meteorological Department (IMD) has forecasted more rain in the coming days.

FPJ Web DeskUpdated: Sunday, August 21, 2022, 05:04 PM IST
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Vehicles stuck in mud slush, after a series of cloudbursts hit different parts of Uttarakhand during the monsoon season, at Raipur area in Dehradun district, Saturday, Aug. 20, 2022. | VIRENDERSINGHNEGI

Heavy rains have wreaked havoc across the nation with around 31 deaths, 22 of them in Himachal Pradesh alone, having been recorded over the past few days. Apart from Himachal, Uttarakhand, Punjab, Jammu & Kashmir, Odisha and Jharkhand have been the worst hit with landslides and flash floods.

The India Meteorological Department (IMD) has forecasted more rain in the coming days. Heavy rainfall has also prevented pilgrims from continuing their ascent to the Mata Vaishno Devi shrine in Jammu & Kashmir.

Here’s a look at the monsoon flood situation in the various states of the country:

Jammu and Kashmir:

A flash-flood-like situation has emerged in Jammu & Kashmir’s Rajouri district after torrential rainfall resulted in the Darhali river overflowing in the upper reaches of the Pir Panjal mountain range.

The movement of pilgrims to Mata Vaishno Devi Shrine in Katra town in the Reasi district resumed on Sunday morning after a temporary suspension due to inclement weather conditions on Saturday. The yatra was suspended since Saturday evening.

Earlier in July, a cloudburst struck the holy cave area of Amarnath which resulted in a heavy discharge of water in the 'Nallah', adjoining the holy cave, following which the route to Amarnath was damaged, it the yatra was on halt for some time.

Himachal Pradesh:

22 people were killed and 12 injured in rain-related incidents on Saturday. The maximum damage was reported from Mandi, Kangra and Chamba districts.

State Disaster Management Department director Sudesh Kumar Mokhta said the five people who went missing after a flash flood in Baghi nullah on the Mandi-Katola-Prashar road in Mandi are still untraceable.

Several families fled their homes located between Baghi and Old Katola after a cloudburst in the area on Saturday and took shelter at safer places.

The roads in the Mandi region of Himachal Pradesh were blocked after heavy rainfall lashed it, resulting in several tourists being stuck due to the roadblocks. Besides, the Chakki railway bridge connecting Pathankot to Himachal Pradesh also collapsed.

Odisha:

Odisha is already reeling under the impact of a medium flood in the Mahanadi river system following incessant rainfall, which has affected above seven lakh people, of whom nearly 5 lakh are still marooned in 763 villages, they said.

The death toll in rain and flood-related incidents rose to six, with rescue teams recovering bodies of at least two persons in Kuchinda area of Sambalpur district.

Earlier, four people, including two minor girls, were killed following a wall collapse on Friday night.

The water level in all the rivers located in north Odisha are in spate due to heavy rainfall induced by a deep depression over the Bay of Bengal, and subsequent flood water release from Jharkhand through the Galudih barrage, the officials said.

IMD Bhubaneswar director HR Biswas said: “The deep depression has moved northwest over Jharkhand. It will gradually weaken. Under its influence, western Odisha districts may see heavy to very heavy rainfall where it still hovers.”

Uttarakhand:

n Uttarakhand, a series of cloudbursts early Saturday killed four people, while 10 went missing as rivers breached banks, washed away bridges, and threw mud and waters inside houses, forcing evacuation of multiple villages.

As the gushing waters threatened more damage, a number of roads were blocked for traffic, while all Anganwadi centres and schools were ordered shut in the Pauri district of Uttarakhand.

The Maldevta area in Dehradun was hit by floods brought about by the overflowing Song river. The floods washed away a flyover connecting Dehradun to Jolly Grant airport. Several villages have been cut off as well. Seven people were feared dead after a cloudburst hit Sarkhet village.

While, schools in Mandi and Kullu districts have been closed due to floods and rain. Water also entered the caves of Tapkeshwar, a famous Shiva temple on the banks of the Tons river, which was in spate.

Uttar Pradesh:

The Gangetic plains of Prayagraj and Varanasi in Uttar Pradesh have also seen a significant rise in the water levels of both the Ganga and the Yamuna. This has led to waterlogging in several residential areas in the districts.

Varanasi district administration officials on Saturday said that the floodwaters were just 1 metre below the warning level of 70.262 m and were rising at a rate of nearly 2 cm per hour. Officials said the Varuna river was also overflowing.

Jharkhand:

n the neighbouring Jharkhand, heavy rainfall associated with high-speed winds since Friday evening uprooted scores of trees and electricity poles, and submerged low-lying areas in many districts.

A woman died when a mud wall of her house caved in on her in West Singhbhum district on Saturday morning as the deep depression that crossed the Odisha coast on the previous evening brought incessant rainfall in several areas.

Normal life was thrown out of gear with rain disrupting power supply in many areas for long hours and causing traffic jams in major cities.

Two flights have also been cancelled till 2 pm due to bad weather on Saturday.

(with agency inputs)

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