KARACHI/PESHAWAR/ISLAMABAD/QUETTA – Over forty persons died during the fresh heavy spell of torrential rains, floods and other related incidents across Pakistan especially in Sindh, Khyber Pakhtunkhwa and Balochistan yesterday.
According to the Provincial Disaster Management Authority (PDMA) Sindh, 29 civilians were killed in various accidents and incidents during rains across the province including Karachi.
The report said 14 of the dead were from Karachi, six from the eastern district and four from Korangi, while one each in the southern, central, western and Malir districts. The Sindh government has imposed a rain emergency in Karachi.
According to the PDMA, nine deaths were reported in Thatta and two in Khairpur, including seven children.
The report said 11 people were injured during the rains.
Several main roads and streets were completely flooded and Abdullah Shah Ghazi, KPT and Submarine underpasses were closed for traffic.
Most areas of Defense and Clifton in Karachi are inundated with almost waist-high water in some areas and similar other areas are reporting a similar situation. The port city received high amounts of rainfall with PAF Base Masroor recording rainfall of 119.5mm. DHA Phase-II received 106mm of rain while 76mm was recorded in Quaidabad. About 65 mm at PAF Base Faisal, 56mm in Orangi Town, 49mm at Old Terminal, 46mm in Gulshan-e-Hadeed and 29mm at Jinnah Terminal.
Nullahs in Orangi Town and Korangi overflowed and entered houses. II Chundrigar Road, DHA, Sharae Faisal, University Road, NIPA Chowrangi, and Qayyumabad Chorangi were among the roads flooded with waist-high water, leaving people and cars stranded for hours.
Residents complained of prolonged power outages lasting more than 36 hours.
While on the other hand, Karachi Administrator Murtaza Wahab in a tweet has claimed that the situation at the II Chundrigar Road has improved after the water level of the city nullah came down.
Later, he said that the University Road had also been cleared for traffic. In a statement issued this morning, Wahab said that he visited Malir, District East, District West, District South, and District Central along with provincial minister Nasir Hussain Shah and Sharjeel Memon, and reviewed the situation after the rains.
n Over 40 more die mostly in Sindh and KP with 14 in Karachi alone n Most parts of Karachi inundated with rain water badly affecting civic amenities
n several cities of KP also affected by heavy rains and flood water n Death
toll in Balochistan reaches 62 n PMD warns of ‘heavy to very heavy’ rains
from July 14 to 17 n PM directs for regular monitoring, relief operations
“Chairman Bilawal Bhutto Zardari and Chief Minister Sindh have issued special instructions and instructed ministers to supervise the work themselves,” Wahab added.
Later in the day, the Karachi police confirmed that the KPT Underpass in Clifton had been reopened for traffic.
Sindh Chief Minister Murad Ali Shah has directed the local government to get small pumps installed in the streets where rainwater had accumulated and clear them.
“A forecast for another spell of heavy rain has been issued, therefore, we have to not just restore all the roads and streets but also be prepared for the upcoming days,” he added.
Following the first spell of monsoon rains in Sindh, which wreaked havoc on the provincial capital and brought life to a standstill due to the accumulation of water on the roads, the Pakistan Meteorological Department (PMD) has warned of “heavy to very heavy” rains from July 14 to July 17.
The PMD, in a press release on Tuesday, informed the masses that “monsoon currents from the Bay of Bengal are continuously penetrating upper and central parts of the country, while another strong monsoon low-pressure area (LPA) is likely to approach Sindh on July 14 (Thursday)”.
The PMD further said that rains will not only hit Sindh but will also be experienced in Balochistan and South Punjab.
“Under the influence of this weather system, more widespread intermittent heavy to very heavy rain-wind/thundershowers are expected in Karachi, Hyderabad Thatta, Badin, Shaheed Benazirabad, Dadu, Tharparkar, Umerkot, Sanghar, Mirpurkhas, Mithi, Jamshoro, Nosheroferoze, Larkana, Jaccobabad, Ghotki, Sukkur, Khairpur, Shikarpur, Qambar Shahdadkot, Kashmore, Zhob, Ziarat, Barkhan, Loralai, Bolan, Kohlu, Kalat, Khuzdar, Lasbella, Awaran, Naseerabad, Jaffarabad, Jhal Magsi, Dera Bugti, Sibbi, Panjgur, Turbat, and Pasni from July 14 to 17.”
Meanwhile, Rawalpindi/Islamabad, Peshawar, Nowshera, Mardan, Faisalabad, Lahore and Gujranwala will likely be affected by urban flooding from July 13 to 14.
The PMD said that rainfall may trigger landslides in Kashmir, Galiyat, Murree, Chillas, Diamir, Gilgit, Hunza, Astore, and Skardu during the forecast period.
“Travellers and tourists are advised to remain cautious during the forecast period. All concerned authorities are advised to remain alert and to take necessary precautionary measures during the forecast period.”
According to details, over a dozen people also died and dozens of buildings either collapsed or got damaged amid the ongoing rainfall of the monsoon seas in various districts of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa.
An official of the Provincial Disaster Management Authority (PDMA) said that the ongoing spell of rains is likely to continue during the current week.
He added that nullahs and other water channels are likely to overflow in areas of Peshawar, Nowshera, Swabi, Bannu, Tank, DI Khan, and Mardan districts.
Four persons died in roof collapse incidents amid flood in Swabi district. Local sources said that two persons died in a roof collapse incident in Yar Hussain village and another two died in a similar incident in Iskandari area.
Amjad Khan, a local resident, told this correspondent that water level is still risky and authorities have failed to drain out water, although some areas have become clear because of sunny day on Tuesday. Also, Swabi district is more prone to flood as it contains a number of big canals.
Flash floods in the Tank district’s Pai Union Council resulted in the death of one person and injuries to several others.
Speaking to journalists, Tank Deputy Commissioner Hameedullah Khan Khattak said that several homes had been devastated by the floodwater.
He added that the district administration, Pakistan Army personnel and representatives of Rescue 1122 helped the affectees and conducted rescue operations.
The deputy commissioner said the mountains in South Waziristan received heavy rains over the last two days that caused flash floods in Pai Union Council in Tank.
He said a medical team had also arrived in the area to provide treatment facilities to the affected people.
The man who died was identified as Tayyab, a taxicab driver. He was killed when the roof of his mud-thatched house collapsed in Pai village. The rescue personnel recovered the body from the debris. Several other people were injured in wall and roof collapse incidents.
He said heavy machinery is being used to rescue the trapped people and flush out floodwater from affected areas. Tents were also provided to the affectees.
Mardan district was hit by strong rains and flooding that caused more than 23 houses and 7 shops to collapse, resulting in the deaths of a lady and two children, according to Rescue 1122 and local sources.
On the second day of Eid-ul-Azha, the heavy rain began early in the day. Several homes and businesses in the districts of Mardan, Takhtbhi, Rustam, Katlang, and Ghari Kapura were affected by the severe rain.
The union council Bharicham, which is in the centre of Mardan City, was severely impacted by the heavy rain. Rainwater flew across the streets and highways. The roof of Mohammad Jan’s home in the Kohat Cungara neighbourhood in Takhatbhai tehsil fell, killing his wife (60) and injuring his two daughters, aged 15 and 17 years.
According to early reports, 6 homes and a store were damaged in Takhatbhai tehsil while 17 homes were damaged in Mardan tehsil.
The KP disaster management authorities were busy in relief operations in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa today after two people were killed and three injured during rains and floods in Swabi, Malakand, Dera Ismail Khan, Tank and Nowshera on Monday.
According to authorities, the fast-flowing waters swept away houses and schools in the areas leading to severe damage to the infrastructure.
KP Chief Minister Mahmood Khan has instructed all the agencies to remain on high alert, while teams have been dispatched to rescue stranded people.
Separately, the PDMA has said that its control room was active 24/7 and urged people to report any untoward incident to the helpline 1700.
SECTION 144 IMPOSED IN BALOCHISTAN
The monsoon rains have also wreaked havoc in Balochistan, where the government has now imposed Section 144 of the Code of Criminal Procedure on swimming and picnics near dams, rivers and other water bodies across the province for a month.
In a report issued yesterday, the PDMA revealed that the rain related death in Balochistan has reached 62.
Separately, more than 600 houses were swept away in the floods. According to the report, Bolan, Quetta, Zhob, Dakki, Khasdar, Kohlu, Ketch, Mastung, Harnai, Qila Saifullah, and Sibi were among the most affected areas.
Meanwhile, Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif directed the federal and provincial civic bodies to closely monitor the safety measures ahead of the monsoon spell starting from Thursday and asked them to ensure a proper precautionary system for the people across the country including Sindh, Balochistan and South Punjab.
In a directive, the PM mentioned unity, cooperation and selfless service to the people as strength of his government and lauded the National Disaster Management Authority (NDMA) for extending support to provincial governments and institutions in controlling the situation amid heavy rains.
The prime minister also paid tribute to the provincial governments and the institutions for their services in protecting the lives and property of the people.
He urged the departments concerned to do their best to serve the people with dedication during difficulties being faced by common people.
In a message to the workers and staffers of civic bodies, he said the spirit of helping the mankind was in fact the greatest and noble service.
He commended the departments responsible for municipal and civic measures including the police for showing a great spirit of public service during the Eid holidays.
The PM has also announced compensation for the citizens killed due to the worst rains in Karachi.
According to MQM spokesperson, Prime Minister Shahbaz Sharif and Muttahida Qaumi Movement (MQM) leader Dr Khalid Maqbool Siddiqui the other day had a telephonic conversation.
During the telephonic conversation, Dr Khalid Maqbool briefed the Prime Minister about the situation in Karachi during the rains.