Over 300 people, including more than 100 children, died and 239 others were injured in rain-related incidents in Pakistan in the last over two months since the monsoon began in the country, the national disaster management agency has said.
Every year, Pakistan struggle to cope with the annual monsoon deluge and other rain-related incidents which cause huge loss of life and properties. The monsoon season runs from June-July through September.
Monsoon rains are lashing Pakistan at a time when authorities are trying to contain the spread of the coronovirus, which has infected over three lakh people and caused 6,377 deaths since February when the country reported its first case.
Seasonal torrential rains have claimed 310 lives — 135 men, 107 children and 70 women — during the recent monsoon season, the National Disaster Management Authority (NDMA) said on Saturday.
Sindh is the worst affected province with 136 fatalities, followed by 116 in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, 16 in Punjab, 21 in Balochistan, 12 in Pakistan-occupied Kashmir and 11 in Gilgit-Baltistan, the Express Tribune reported, citing the NDMA data.
According to NDMA, 239 people 6 women, 142 men and 41 children were also injured in several rain-related incidents, while 78,521 houses were destroyed and another 139,102 were damaged.
The NDMA in a report last month had said that Pakistan has neither an effective telemetry system nor modern weather forecast radars for timely prediction of flooding. Telemetry is the automatic recording and transmission of data from remote or inaccessible sources to an IT system in a different location for monitoring and analysis.
The report had noted that Pakistan has a medium and long term forecast system capable of accurately predicting the weather for a period of only 7 to 15 days while the seasonal weather forecast accuracy rate is also not more than 65-70%.
The contingency report indicated that Pakistan is relying on old technology for weather forecast which makes it difficult to make standard and accurate atmospheric predictions. Monsoon rains hit the sub-continent every year in summer, bringing heavy downpour that trigger floods and landslides and displace hundreds and thousands of people.