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More deaths as rains batter Karachi

Heavy monsoon rains continued their relentless downpour in the southern province of Sindh on Monday, claiming at least another five lives, causing even more havoc and hampering relief efforts, officials said on Tuesday.

The southern port city of Karachi has received the most rainfall in a single day since the rain began in earnest almost two weeks ago, and more rain is expected. "We received almost 108 mm of rain yesterday [Monday], and expect moderate to heavy showers within the next 36 to 48 hours," Hasrat Mir, an official of the meteorological office in Karachi, told IRIN.

The Edhi trust, a Pakistani NGO run country-wide by a Karachi-based philanthropist, said they had received information of at least five more rain-related deaths on Monday - raising the total number of such deaths to at least 86 since the devastation began over the weekend.

The Sindh government has already declared an emergency in the province, which has seen the entire rural district of Badin flooded by a breach in a local canal caused by the rains, with tens of thousands forced to leave their homes.

On Tuesday, an Edhi trust official, Islam-ul-Haq Pirzada, told IRIN from Badin city, about 300 km northeast of Karachi, that hundreds of people from the rural areas had sought shelter there.
"Every government building, every school, even a nurses’ training institute, is full of people who have had to leave their homes to save their lives," he said.

There had been hopes that the situation would ameliorate when flood waters appeared to be receding, but these were dashed when the rain continued at the start of the week.

On Monday, a senior Sindh government official called the devastation a "calamity" as he described the suffering of the local people and crops that had been destroyed, and the human death toll had reached 80.

Army and navy teams were called in to assist local administrations as they battled blinding rains, he added.


This article was produced by IRIN News while it was part of the United Nations Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs. Please send queries on copyright or liability to the UN. For more information: https://shop.un.org/rights-permissions

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