KARACHI, PAKISTAN: The death toll from rain-related incidents over the past month has risen to 147 as monsoon rains continue to batter Pakistan, triggering flash floods in parts of the country, officials said. responsible.
The National Disaster Management Authority said 88 women and children are among the dead so far. The monsoon rains also damaged homes, roads, bridges and power stations across the country.
The situation was particularly dire in the major southern port city of Karachi, the country’s largest, where entire neighborhoods remained submerged on Monday, leaving commuters stranded in places or attempting to cross knee-deep water on foot or by bike. Some residents organized boats to move them to safer places.
“At the moment the situation is such that we have to travel by boat rather than vehicle because the roads are flooded,” said resident Abdul Raheem.
Other Karachi residents said they were forced to abandon their cars on submerged roads and walk in waist-deep water. Authorities summoned paramilitary troops to help them drain water from flooded streets and evacuate people.
The rains would be almost twice as heavy as the average downpour at this time of year. They started in mid-June, initially wreaking havoc in the southwestern province of Balochistan, where 63 people have died so far.
In Sind province, of which Karachi is the capital, the disaster management agency said at least 26 people died. Heavy rains also hit Islamabad and the eastern province of Punjab.
Experts say climate change is the cause of heavier than average downpours in Pakistan.
Every year, many cities in Pakistan grapple with the annual monsoon deluge, drawing criticism over the government’s poor planning. The season runs from July to September and experts say the rains are essential to irrigate crops and fill dams and other water reservoirs in Pakistan. Parts of southern Pakistan have been facing drought since the beginning of this year.

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