100 dead after fierce dust storms in India

Saul Bowman
May 4, 2018

It is reported that during strong large-scale storms at least 77 persons were killed, 143 were injured. Unfortunately, forecasters are warning that more storms are on the way, and similar weather fronts are expected to roll across an even wider area of the country this coming weekend.

T.P. Gupta, of the Uttar Pradesh relief commissioner's office, said: 'We can confirm at least 65 deaths, 43 of them in the Agra district, from around 40 of the state's 75 districts'. In Rajasthan, 39 people were killed while Telangana reported seven deaths, Uttarakhand four, and Jharkhand and Punjab two each.

On Wednesday, a combination of weather systems emanating from hilly states and either side of the sea, East and West, resulted in the intense thundershowers and dust storms in Rajasthan and Uttar Pradesh that left several dead.

He called the death toll "unprecedented" from such a storm in the past 20 years. "There is a high probability that winds will intensify in the next 48 hours in Rajasthan, which may lead to another dust storm".

More than 40 people were killed in the city when winds as high as 80 miles per hour collapsed houses and brought down trees, Uttar Pradesh state Relief Commissioner Sanjay Kumar said.

In towns, the storm triggered traffic snarls and in rural areas there were reports of crops being damaged due to hailstorm.

State Chief Secretary Rajive Kumar has instructed the Commissioner of Agra division to ensure that relief is distributed in the affected areas by Thursday evening and senior officials visit the injured in hospitals, said U.P. Information Department principal secretary Awanish Awasthi.

Another 36 people died in Rajasthan's eastern districts of Alwar, Dholpur and Bharatpur, according to the Rajasthan government's Disaster Management Department. Adequate and immediate measures would be taken to bring relief to the affected people, said the authorities.

The National Weather Forecasting Centre of the India Meteorological Department in a release has predicted that thunderstorm conditions in India will continue till May 7, although different regions will be impacted on different days. It said that there will be light rain/thunderstorm/dust storm in Dholpur till Saturday, while in Alwar and Bharatpur it will be till Friday.

Severe dust storms across northern India have killed more than 100 people, destroyed homes and uprooted trees.

Dozens of people have died in violent rain and dust storms in northwestern India that collapsed homes, uprooted trees and caused power outages, authorities said Thursday.

Gera said that the families of those killed would each be given about $6,000 in compensation. "Condolences to the bereaved families". He directed officials to assist those who had been affected by the storm.

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