Rains, floods claims another 39 lives across Pakistan

Fatalities reported in Sindh, Balochistan provinces, as death toll from relentless rains and swirling floods since June 14 rise to over 700.

Rains, floods claims another 39 lives across Pakistan

Another 39 people have fallen prey to the raging floods caused by torrential downpours in southern and northern Pakistan over the past 24 hours, pushing the overall toll to over 700 since June, officials and local media reported.

The majority of the deaths have been reported in the provinces of southern Sindh and southwestern Balochistan, where hundreds of thousands of people have been stranded by relentless rains and swirling floods.

At least 25 people have died in Sindh in the last 24 hours as a result of roof collapses, electrocution and drowning, local broadcaster Samaa News reported, adding that rescue workers, backed by army troops and air force choppers, are struggling to reach the stranded.

The roof of a mosque collapsed on Monday evening in a remote village in Sindh's Khairpur district, killing at least seven worshippers and injuring dozens, the district administration confirmed.

Known as the world's largest dates-producing district, Khairpur has been inundated by week-long rain spells, damaging 70% of the date crop.

Five members of a family, including children, were killed when their house's roof collapsed in Shikarpur district, while another four died in Larkana, the hometown of slain Prime Minister Benazir Bhutto.

The remaining deaths were reported in the districts of Dadu, Nawabshah, Ghotki, Sukkur, and Kashmore.

Nine more casualties were reported from different parts of Balochistan, where incessant rains and flooding overwhelmed hundreds of villages, sweeping away houses, roads, bridges, and animals, and submerging large swaths of land.

Tens of thousands of people are living in tents and shelter camps set up by the government and non-governmental relief organizations.

Following torrential rains and flooding, the government of northwestern Khyber Pakhtunkhwa (PK) province has declared an emergency in at least four districts.

At least two people were killed when the roof of their house collapsed in the remote Bajaur district, which touches neighboring Afghanistan.

One of the hardest hit districts, Dera Ghazi Khan, in the northeastern Punjab province, continued to reel from gushing floods caused by massive downpours over the past week, as army and air force planes dropped food packets, water bottles, and dried rations on marooned residents in several villages.

A statement from Pakistan Army's media wing said troops have been busy in rescue and relief operations in flood-hit areas of Sindh, Balochistan, KP, and Punjab.

Army helicopters were dispatched to affected areas in Sindh, Punjab, and Balochistan provinces to "speed up rescue and relief efforts."

Whereas army and paramilitary troops have been engaged in rescue and relief operations in all four provinces, it added.

The ongoing monsoon spell that began on June 14 has so far killed over 700 people, including over 200 each in Sindh and Balochistan, according to the National Disaster Management Authority, a state-run agency that coordinates between different relief and rescue organizations.

Hüseyin Demir

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