Pune rains death toll rises to 21, five still missing
(PTI Photo)

Pune: The police said on Friday that the death toll in floods and rain-related mishaps in Pune district stood at 21, with five persons missing.

Heavy rains lashed Pune city and the district on Wednesday and Thursday, leading to sudden flooding of nullahs, rivers and incidents of wall collapse. Pune police officials said 15 persons died in rain or flood-related incidents in the city, while four were missing. Pune Rural police said that six people died in the district, while one person was missing.

Earlier in the day, senior Maharashtra minister Chandrakant Patil blamed unauthorized construction on nullahs and streams for the flash floods. Patil, who is guardian minister of the district, said probe was needed to find out who gave permission for such construction, adding that an inquiry could begin after the end of code of conduct post state Assembly polls.

Calling the floods "extraordinary", the senior BJP leader said the administration was not prepared for such intense downpour, though some pre-emptive measures like shifting people to safer places were taken in Baramati area. Patil reportedly was at the receiving end of people's anger in Sahakar Nagar area here where five people died in a wall collapse during Thursday's downpour. The city recorded 106 millimetres of rainfall on Thursday. Over 3,000 people were shifted to safety while 59 villages in the district were affected.

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Free Press Journal