Shimla: Heavy rainfall has wreaked havoc in multiple parts of north India, resulting in at least 34 casualties over the past three days. The affected regions include Himachal Pradesh, Uttarakhand, Punjab, Haryana, Jammu and Kashmir, Rajasthan, Delhi, and adjoining areas. Cities and towns are grappling with submerged roads and buildings, with water levels reaching knee-deep. Disturbing images depicting vehicles floating like paper boats and structures submerged along swollen riverbanks have been widely shared online.
The incessant rain in Himachal Pradesh has caused landslides, flash floods, and significant damage to houses and infrastructure. Flash floods in Manali, Kullu, Kinnaur, and Chamba swept away shops and vehicles. The state’s major rivers, such as Ravi, Beas, Satluj, Swan, and Chenab, are currently overflowing. Chief Minister Sukhwinder Singh Sukhu has urged residents to remain indoors for the next 24 hours, emphasizing the expectation of heavy rainfall. Helpline numbers have been established to report any individuals affected by the calamity.
Uttarakhand has also witnessed landslides and flash floods, with water levels in rivers and streams surpassing the danger mark. As a precautionary measure, all schools in Gurgaon and Delhi have been closed due to waterlogging. The Gurgaon administration has advised corporate houses to facilitate work-from-home arrangements to avoid traffic congestion. In response to Haryana releasing a substantial amount of water into the Yamuna River from the Hathnikund barrage, the Delhi government has established 16 control rooms to monitor flood-prone areas. Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal assures that, according to expert predictions, Delhi is unlikely to experience severe flooding. However, preparations are in place to relocate residents from vulnerable areas if necessary.
The districts of Kathua and Samba in Jammu and Kashmir have been issued a red alert. Meanwhile, the Amarnath Yatra pilgrimage has resumed after a three-day suspension. Heavy rainfall in Rajasthan, Punjab, and Haryana has led to extensive waterlogging and flooding in low-lying regions, prompting prompt action from authorities. The India Meteorological Department (IMD) attributes the intense rainfall to an interaction between a western disturbance and monsoonal winds in northwest India.