Heavy rain kills 36 in Karnataka, Andhra


Bangalore/Hyderabad : At least 36 people have been killed due to heavy rain in several north Karnataka districts and Andhra Pradesh, officials said Thursday. The downpour has inundated several villages, damaged crops and has disrupted communication and transport links.

Support TwoCircles

In Karnataka, the worst affected was Bijapur district, about 580 km from Bangalore, with 17 deaths. The victims were either washed away in flooded rivers or died when their homes collapsed.

Belgaum, Koppal, Bellary, Raichur, Bagalkot and Bidar are the other districts battered by the downpour which continued Thursday morning.

“Deaths have been reported from these districts also. We fear at least 30 people have lost their lives. We are awaiting detailed information from the affected places,” a spokesperson for the chief minister told IANS Thursday.

“Rescue and relief operations are on in full swing in the affected areas. Ministers from these districts have cut short their presence at a brain-storming session near Mysore and rushed back to supervise the operations,” he said.

Since late Wednesday, it has been raining in state capital Bangalore too. Meteorological officials said the conditions would remain the same till Friday.

In Andhra Pradesh, the rain has been incessant since Wednesday and has thrown normal life out of gear.

Several villages in Mahabubnagar and Kurnool districts were inundated as rivulets, streams and tanks were overflowing. Officials said at least 10 tanks in Mahabubnagar district had breached their banks.

Two people drowned in a rivulet in Alwaynpalli village near Jadcherla town in Mahabubnagar district, about 120 km from Hyderabad. Three other people were washed away in two different incidents in the same district, while one person died due to lightning in Karimnagar district, about 150 km from Hyderabad.

An Indian Air Force helicopter Wednesday rescued five students caught in flood waters in Mahabubnagar district.

Three villages in Mahabubnagar were cut off from the rest of the district. Revenue officials have begun efforts to rescue people stranded in the low-lying areas.

Kurnool town, about 250 km from Hyderabad, and dozens of villages in Kurnool district were also inundated. In some of the affected areas in Kurnool town people were sitting on rooftops waiting for help.

Authorities in Kurnool district have evacuated about 12,000 people and have opened 21 relief camps.

The heavy rain also damaged roads, breaking the transport link to several villages. Electricity and communication lines were also damaged.

Chief Minister K. Rosaiah held a high-level meeting here Thursday morning to review the situation. He directed officials to take measures to evacuate people from low-lying areas.

Since the weather office has warned of more rain over the next two days, especially in coastal Andhra and Telangana regions, the chief minister asked the district collector and other officials to be on high alert.