Even as the rainwater drained and the two lanes of the Pune-Bengaluru national highway were reopened after a four-day break, the death toll in Maharashtra’s flood-ravaged districts increased to 192 on Monday. While 25 individuals are still missing, and 3.7 lakh people have been evacuated, most of whom are from the Sangli district. In Western Maharashtra, the levels of Panchganga and Krishna rivers are still dangerously high.
According to a report in the Times of India, since last Thursday, severe rains have caused landslides in Konkan and western Maharashtra, causing widespread devastation. In the Raigad district alone, there are 95 casualties. According to the IMD, widespread rain is extremely likely across the Konkan, Goa, and ghat areas of central Maharashtra over the next three days. Chief Minister Uddhav Thackeray had to cut short his aerial assessment of Satara district after his helicopter could not land due to low visibility,
Ajit Pawar, the state’s deputy chief minister, has stated that “human involvement” may not be a part of the state’s landslides and that the state will appoint a team of geological specialists to investigate the cause. “The landslides did not occur in landslide-prone areas. After viewing flood-ravaged Sangli in a lifeboat, Pawar was quoted as saying by the newspaper, “There is no human involvement in these areas.”
Meanwhile, the IMD has forecast widespread rainfall activity with heavy to heavy falls over Uttarakhand, Punjab, Haryana and Uttar Pradesh, Jammu and Kashir and Himachal Pradesh till July 29.
The IMD has issued an orange alert predicting heavy to very heavy rainfall in Madhya Pradesh. Delhi recorded a maximum temperature of 33.1 degrees Celsius on Monday. The national capital is expected to receive moderate rain during the day on Tuesday.
With heavy rains lashing various parts of Jammu, a few low-lying areas were inundated and water also entered several houses. Police have advised people to avoid travel on the Jammu-Srinagar national highway due to inclement weather.
The IMD in its latest bulletin has forecast widespread rainfall activity with heavy to heavy falls over Jammu and Kashmir, Himachal Pradesh, Uttarakhand, Punjab, Haryana, and Uttar Pradesh till July 29.
The Shimla Meteorological Centre has advised the public not to go near rivers and other water bodies in the hill state in the coming days to avoid any untoward incident. It also warned of flash floods, landslides and uprooting of trees due to heavy rain in the next few days. Parts of Rajasthan and Uttar Pradesh have been receiving rains since Sunday.
(With inputs from PTI)