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90 dead, 70 missing as rains wreak havoc across Maharashtra

The Times of India logo The Times of India 24-07-2021
a group of people walking down a dirt road next to a river © Provided by The Times of India

MUMBAI: At least 90 people have died and nearly 70 are missing after rain-related tragedies — largely landslides — reported across the state on Friday following incessant, and sometimes record-drowning, showers.

Raigad, the worst affected district, reported 60 deaths in three landslide incidents, including the worst at Taliye village in Mahad taluka that has claimed 49 lives.

Another 47 people were feared trapped under the debris. While rescue teams were delayed in their bid to access the site, villagers claimed they had got no advance alert. However, the government said the villagers had been shifted to safety but had come back.

PM Modi announced Rs 2 lakh for the families of the victims of the Raigad landslips, and Rs 50,000 as compensation tothe injured.

The Maharashtra government had sought additional assistance of defence forces to carry out relief and rescue operations in the flood-hit districts. Deputy CM Ajit Pawar spoke to Union defence minister Rajnath Singh and sought the help of defence forces. Home minister Amit Shah also spoke to CM Uddhav Thackeray and assured of all the required help.

The CM also announced an ex-gratia of Rs 5 lakh for the families of victims of all the 11 landslides since Thursday. Rain and flooding due to raging rivers both began receding in the Konkan districts, especially Ratnagiri and Raigad, but the administration said they will remain on alert.

The rescuers’ focus is turning to Satara and Sangli, where an IMD red alert for heavy rain is in place. Satara and Kolhapur reported 13 deaths due to landslides and other rain accidents and 26 people were missing, while nearly 85,000 people have been shifted to safer places, largely from Sangli and Kolhapur, as levels of the Krishna are rising. Eleven passengers had a lucky escape as their bus was almost swept into the swollen Chikotra river in Kolhapur early on Friday when the driver ignored warnings and drove on to a flooded bridge. He has been booked. Ratnagiri district reported 17 deaths, nine due to landslides. The state reported over 11 landslides in 48 hours across five districts.

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