As Pakistan continues to batter heavy rains which have inundated cities and prompted flash floods across the country, 18 more were added to the list who became victims of the deluge that washed away bridges and submerged houses and markets.
As Monday spelt misery for the citizens of Karachi, five people lost their lives due to electrocution, while six persons drowned taking the death toll to 11 in Karachi on a single day, reported Dawn.
Hour-long power outages and inundation of residential areas due to incessant rain and subsequent accumulation of water protests against administration officials also erupted in several areas of Sindh which added to the plight of the people.
The downpours, which started early on Sunday continued to come down till 10 am with frequent breaks and by the end of the first half of the day the city had received up to 204-millimetre rain.
“The system is very much there. The latest data analysis suggests that the rain will continue for another two days. We may see moderate to heavy rains in Karachi and lower Sindh areas till late July 27,” said Sardar Sarfraz of the Met Office.
Due to the heavy downpour, Monday had already been declared a holiday for the citizens of Karachi and Hyderabad.
Though several key roads were cleared by the administration after hours-long efforts in the cities, life remained miserable in several low-lying areas, residential neighbourhoods, housing societies and commercial centres which remained flooded.
According to Dawn, rain-related incidents have wreaked havoc in several parts of Pakistan as a 20- year-old man was reported dead in village Baqar Nizamani of Tando Mohammad Khan district in Hyderabad recently whereas in Dadu and Khairpur Mirs, two persons were killed and 10 others were injured.
Moreover, in the coastal talukas of Ghorabari and Mirpur Sakro, hundreds of acres of agricultural land were submerged after a riverine stream started overflowing due to rain.
Due to continuing downpours, rainwater could not be drained out in Jamshoro, Kotri, Sann and Bhan Syedabad towns where low-lying areas were inundated whereas various parts of Shaheed Benazirabad district, including Nawabshah, Daur, Daulatpur, Bandhi, Sakrand and Kazi Ahmed towns, received heavy downpours on Monday.
The third spell of monsoon rains has been giving Balochistan tough times, washing away at least two bridges on the Quetta-Karachi National Highway – Landa Dora near Bela and Danda area of Uthal, and resulting in the death of four people in Khuzdar and Lasbela. Moreover, Punjab has received 150 per cent more rain so far as compared to the last monsoon, according to Provincial Disaster Management Authority Director General Faisal Farid.
However, he ruled out the possibility of flooding in the province, Dawn reported citing the Met Department In other parts of Punjab, at least 22 villages of Rajanpur and 13 in Mianwali districts were flooded due to rain in the mountainous areas of Sulaiman Range, the PDMA added.
Meanwhile, in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, over 260 persons were rescued from the lowlying villages located along the River Kabul after the river overflowed and entered several localities late on Sunday and Monday. On the other hand, Provincial Disaster Management Authority (PDMA) also issued a low to medium flood alert for the districts of Haripur, Swabi and Nowshera districts in anticipation of the opening of the Tarbela Dam spillways.
Rainwater has accumulated on the main roads and streets and has caused a disruption in the flow of traffic, and the accumulated water has caused several vehicles and motorcycles to break down on the streets.
The Pakistan Meteorological Department forecasted more rains in the coming days, saying the monsoon spell would remain active during the ongoing week.
The weather office has advised all concerned authorities to remain alert as heavy rainfall may generate urban flooding and waterlogging in several cities across the country, and may trigger landslides in northern areas of Pakistan.