Monsoon floods have claimed 35 lives in Madhya Pradesh so far. Nine are reportedly missing and thousands have left their homes according to officials.
Over 300,000 people have been affected by the floods, including about 8,000 who had to leave their inundated homes to take shelter in 27 temporary relief camps provided by the state government, the officials said.
About 2500 houses have been seriously damaged by the floods, according to official data.
Of the 51 districts of Madhya Pradesh, 23 have been affected by the floods.
Officials said 33 districts received above average rains, 14 average, and four received below average rains from June 1 to July 16.
State capital Bhopal accounts for the largest number of flood-affected people, including five who lost their lives. Panna and Jabalpur districts account for the largest number — seven each — of people who died in the floods.
Among the nine who are missing are five young men who were swept off by the swollen Tamsa river in Rewa district. They were picnicking on the river bank.
The 33 districts that have received above average rains during the monsoon this year so far are Jabalpur, Katni, Chhindwara, Seoni, Mandala, Narsinghpur, Sagar, Damoh, Panna, Tikamgarh, Chhatarpur, Sidhi, Satna, Indore, Alirajpur, Khandwa, Ujjain, Mandsaur, Ratlam, Dewas, Shajapur, Murena, Shivpuri, Guna, Ashoknagar, Bhopal, Sehore, Raisen, Vidisha, Rajgarh, Hoshangabad, Harda, and Betul.
Meanwhile, intermittent showers along with spells of heavy downpour brought life to a grinding halt in Agra, cutting off several localities as knee-deep water inundated city roads, officials said on Sunday.
“We have not seen such heavy rain in July for many years. Some parts are totally deluged in rain water,” said Vijay Nagar colony resident Sudhier Gupta.
In Goverdhan, the crowds of pilgrims gathered for the annual five-day Mudiya Poonau festival faced lots of difficulties while performing the 21-km parikrama (circumambulation) of the mount.
Lord Krishna is said to have held aloft the holy hill on his little finger for the ‘Brajbasis’, the people of Braj, to take shelter under during a downpour unleashed by Lord Indra, the god of rain.
“This year, the arrangements have been generally poor and wanting, compared to last year and pilgrims are facing lots of hardships,” said Pavan Gautam, an activist.
The railways have introduced a few special trains while the Uttar Pradesh State Roadways has deployed over a thousand buses to ferry pilgrims to the holy hill.
Mudiya Poonau parikrama and the puja in Goverdhan annually attracts over 10 million pilgrims. (IANS)