Rain fury: 5 killed in WB, 1.6 million affected

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New Delhi, Jun 18 (UNI) At least five people were killed and 1.6 million people affected in devastating floods in West Bengal today while eight people lost their lives in rain-related incidents in Madhya Pradesh.

The Air Force and Army personnel were called in to rescue people, West Bengal Finance Minister Asim Dasgupta told reporters.

'' Altogether 53,000 people are still marooned while 40,000 have already been sheltered in relief camps. The government has also sent 53 tonnes of rice and sanctioned Rs.2.5 crore for the relief work. '' The flashfloods had claimed five lives in the areas, besides three people were missing, he said.

The affected areas included Midnapur, Narayangarh, Sabong and Pingla of West and East Midnapur districts in Bengal which were continuously lashed by the downpour for the past two days Landslides were also reported from a number of places under Kurseong sub-division of Bengal and several South Eastern Railway services were paralysed due to incessant rains.

Meanwhile, in Madhya Pradesh, eight people lost their lives and four were injured in separate rain-related incidents in Gwalior and Morena towns.

In Jharkhand, two rivers -Kharkai and Suvanrekha-reached the danger mark at many places and threatened a flood like situation in the state, particularly in Jamshedpur.

In Arunachal Pradesh, landslides cut off two districts --Kurung Kumey and Lower Subansiri -- from the rest of the country. People living in landslides zone and river bank were advised by the authorities to immediately vacate and shift to safer zones following landslides.

However, Uttar Pradesh witnessed showers for the fourth consecutive day today since the onset of the south-west monsoon.

According to the weatherman, the monsoon was currently active in eastern UP and moderate to rather heavy rainfall accompanied with squall were likely to occur at most places in the state in next 24 hours.

Himachal Pradesh also experieced an active monsoon with intermittent rains lashing the state throughout the day. The capital town recorded 91.3 mm rainfall followed by the tourist resort of Dharamshala at 39 mm, Mandi at 37 mm and Una at 28 mm..

Rains occurred at isolated areas in Punjab overnight even as rains eluded Chandigarh that too with the city remaining enveloped in clouds through out the day. The city recorded the maximum temperature at 34.6 degrees Celsius, four degrees below normal.

Rains played truant with the national Capital for the second day.

The minimum temperature in Delhi was recorded at 25.6 degrees Celsius and the maximum at 35.2 degrees.

In Bihar, roads and lanes in low lying areas of the state capital were under knee-deep water and choked drains entered the houses of the people.

Patna recorded 27.4 mm rainfall during the last 24 hours.

However, the southwest monsoon remained weak over Kerala and Lakshadweep during the past 24 hrs .

Most places at Assam, Meghalaya, Sikkim, Orissa, , Arunachal Pradesh, Nagaland, Manipur, Mizoram, Tripura, coastal Karnataka, Kerala, Chattisgarh, few places in Jammu and Kashmir, east Rajasthan, Lakshadweep, isolated places in Uttarakhand, Haryana, Konkan, Goa, Mid Maharashtra, Tamil Nadu, interior Karnataka and Andaman and Nicobar Islands received heavy to very heavy rain showers.


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