Heavy rains lash Sindh and Khyber Pakhtunkhwa provinces of Pakistan, killing 34; power outages hit many cities

Karachi/Peshawar: At least 34 people, including children, were killed in separate incidents after torrential rains caused flash floods and lashed various parts of Pakistan, officials said on Tuesday. The incessant rainfall across Pakistan has led to power outages in many major cities.

The torrential rains and thunderstorms in southern Sindh province killed at least 18 people on Monday, mostly from electrocution, as the first spell of monsoon rain wreaked havoc in Karachi, exposing its redundant civic structure, including electricity and sewerage systems. Major parts of Pakistan's biggest city remained without power till late Monday night. The two districts in the city, central and east, were the worst-affected.

 Heavy rains lash Sindh and Khyber Pakhtunkhwa provinces of Pakistan, killing 34; power outages hit many cities

People wade through a flooded street after a heavy rainfall in Karachi, Pakistan, Tuesday, July 30, 2019. AP

The Pakistan Meteorological Department (PMD) has warned of more heavy rains in the next 24 hours although the rains have stopped in Karachi since Tuesday morning.

The MeT office recorded around 70 millimetre of rains in Karachi till Monday night while the situation in twin city, Hyderabad was worse with up to 118 millimetre of rainfall recorded there. Other parts of the Sindh province also suffered due to the rains with eight deaths reported mostly from villages in Badin, Hyderabad and Sanghar districts.

Saeed Ghani, Sindh minister for local bodies, said that at least seven persons were killed in rain related incidents in Badin and Hyderabad districts including villages in Matli, Tando Allahyar and some in Sanghar.

After two months of hot and humid weather, the rain brought relief to the Karachiites. However, it also proved to be a source of misery for many.

The rains caused severe disruption in Karachi where domestic and international flights were cancelled and all educational institutions had to be closed and will remain closed today. Besides the power shutdowns, many areas of the city witnessed massive traffic jams as the key roads were inundated due to the rains.

The city administration, which is divided between local and provincial governments led by the Muttahida Qaumi Movement-Pakistan and Pakistan Peoples Party (PPP), respectively, came under severe criticism — first for inadequate preparation for the predicted rain and later for poor response to the damage it caused, Dawn News reported.

Meanwhile, in parts of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa province at least 16 people, including women and children, have died and 30 others have been injured in flash floods caused due to torrential rains, a spokesman for Provincial Disaster Management Authority (PDMA) said. Of the 28 districts in the province, 10 were declared as rain-affected.

The spokesman informed that 12 houses were totally destroyed and 25 others partially damaged due to rain. The PDMA said in a report that 27 animals have been perished in the rains.

Earlier this month, at least 28 people were killed in heavy rains and flash floods that wreaked havoc in the Neelum Valley in Pakistan-occupied Kashmir (PoK).

Rains and snowfall often cause landslides and flash floods in northern Pakistan where millions live in mountainous areas.

Updated Date: Jul 30, 2019 17:52:26 IST