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India

Monsoon rains kill 48 in western India

PUBLISHED : Thursday, 27 July, 2017, 1:10am
UPDATED : Thursday, 27 July, 2017, 8:48am

At least 48 people have been killed as large parts of western India have been lashed by heavy monsoon rains and flooding over the last week, officials said on Wednesday.

In Rajasthan, home to a number of popular tourist destinations, the streets of at least four districts have been turned into virtual rivers, trapping tens of thousands of people on the upper floors of residential buildings. Rescuers were scrambling to rescue thousands of others whose homes have been flooded or destroyed.

By Wednesday, the death toll in the state stood at 19.

In the neighbouring state of Gujarat, at least 29 people have died amid torrential rains.

This week’s deaths have taken the toll to 83 since the start of the monsoon season, which runs from June through September.

In both states, thousands of army and paramilitary rescuers have joined local police to rescue thousands of people marooned as a result of the flooding. Military helicopters are also assisting in rescue efforts.

At least 60 people have died in northeastern Assam state from flooding since the start of the monsoon season. Another 14 people died in the nearby state of Arunachal Pradesh last month after a mudslide swept through a village.

The deaths have mostly occurred from drownings, electrocution and house collapses.

India’s Meteorological Department forecasts heavy rain over both states for the rest of the week.