New Delhi: As the monsoon season reaches its peak, India is facing a calamitous situation with widespread devastation caused by heavy rains and natural disasters. Reports of cloudbursts, floods, landslides, road closures, and water-logging have emerged from several states, leaving communities grappling with the aftermath of Mother Nature’s fury.
The capital city, Delhi, experienced the initial onslaught of the monsoon rains, but now the havoc has spread to many other states, including Uttarakhand, Ladakh, Maharashtra, Mumbai, Odisha, Gujarat, Rajasthan, and Madhya Pradesh. The financial capital, Mumbai, has been submerged in torrential rainfall for two consecutive days, while in Yavatmal, the rainfall has shattered water records dating back 50 years.
In Rajasthan, videos of vehicles being swept away by floods on roads have gone viral, highlighting the severity of the situation. Madhya Pradesh’s Ujjain Mahakal’s court itself has been flooded with water, underscoring the extent of the disaster.
Visuals of a motorcycle being washed away in rain-triggered flood in Rajasthan's Phulera. The riders managed a narrow escape in the incident. pic.twitter.com/NmIE0RA3i7— Press Trust of India (@PTI_News) July 22, 2023
The rising water levels of the Yamuna River in Delhi have once again sparked concerns among residents, while in Ghaziabad and Noida, the unexpected flood in the otherwise dry Hindon River has intensified the crisis.
In Uttar Pradesh’s Bijnor district, a roadways bus carrying 36 passengers got trapped in the middle of a river due to floods. A JCB excavator came to the rescue, preventing the bus from overturning, and all the passengers were safely rescued by boarding the JCB itself.
The hilly regions are particularly susceptible to cloudbursts, as witnessed in Shimla district of Himachal Pradesh. In Laila Gram Panchayat of Rohru Chidgaon area, a cloudburst at around 3 am on Saturday caused massive devastation, with many houses damaged and numerous vehicles swept away. The disaster has also left three people missing, and rescue operations are underway to find them.
Jammu-Srinagar National Highway closed due to heavy rainfall and landslides at various places in Ramban, clearance work underway— ANI (@ANI) July 22, 2023
(Video source – J&K Traffic Police) pic.twitter.com/yo0ZXUGtlZ
Amidst the Shivalik hills in Saharanpur district, the Maa Shakambhari Devi Dham faced floods, forcing authorities to halt darshan due to the dangerous rise in the river’s water level. Policemen on duty are diligently preventing devotees from reaching the shrine.
In Jammu and Kashmir’s Doda district, a cloudburst resulted in severe damage, washing away an entire portion of the Thalila-Chirala link road and causing flooding in various locations.
In Mumbai’s Kalyan area, heavy rains led to the submergence of railway tracks, affecting train operations and causing delays of up to 20 to 25 minutes for commuters.
Himachal Pradesh’s Chamba district witnessed several roads being closed due to landslides, further hampering transportation in the region.
The rising waters of the Ganga River in Varanasi have disrupted the normal flow of life, leading to changes in the location of Ganga Aarti for the third time in five days.
Haridwar district in Uttarakhand experienced the effects of heavy rains in the mountainous regions, with 71 villages submerged in water due to the rising levels of the Ganga and its tributaries. The administration has undertaken rescue efforts, evacuating 81 families to safer locations.
Visuals from Purola in Uttarakhand, where a cloudburst was witnessed earlier today. pic.twitter.com/BGhDMUmz1k— Press Trust of India (@PTI_News) July 22, 2023
Uttarakhand has also seen the closure of many national highways due to heavy rains and landslides. Key routes such as the Rishikesh-Yamunotri and Karnaprayag-Gairsain highways are impassable, disrupting travel and connectivity.
Yavatmal in Maharashtra, known for its droughts, is now grappling with heavy rains and floods that have broken records dating back 50 years.
In Uttarkashi district of Uttarakhand, a cloudburst in Barkot Tehsil led to the closure of the Yamunotri National Highway due to debris and falling stones in Gangnani near Purola. The cloudburst also caused significant damage to Kasturba Gandhi Residential School, several hotels, houses, and vehicles.
Himachal Pradesh is witnessing multiple highway closures due to landslides, further exacerbating the transportation challenges in the state.
Himachal Pradesh | National Highway 5 closed due to a landslide near Wangtu in Kinnaur district. pic.twitter.com/KbioZMAm7A— ANI (@ANI) July 22, 2023
As the monsoon rains continue to wreak havoc, authorities are on high alert, focusing on rescue and relief operations. Citizens are being urged to exercise caution and follow safety guidelines during this challenging period of heavy rainfall and natural calamities.