Seasonal monsoon rains from June to September cause deaths and mass displacement across South Asia every year. Torrential monsoon rains caused landslides and flooded low-lying areas in India. Parts of India’s west coast received up to 594 millimeters (23 inches) of rainfall over 24 hours. At least 136 people have died in the west Indian state of Maharashtra, authorities said Saturday. Thousands of trucks were stuck on a national highway linking Mumbai with the southern technology hub of Bengaluru, with the road submerged in some places. As of Saturday morning, over 90,000 people have been evacuated from affected areas to safety as heavy showers continued to wreak havoc. Major damages have been reported in all three coastal districts of Raigad, Satara, and Ratnagiri. The India Meteorological Department (IMD) on Friday issued a red alert for six districts of Maharashtra, forecasting “extremely heavy” rainfall and recommending preventive actions.
The National Disaster Response Force, the Indian Army, Coast Guards, Navy, Air Force and state authorities have all been deployed as part of the rescue effort. “Dams and rivers are overflowing. We are forced to release water from dams, and, accordingly, we are moving people residing near the river banks to safer places,” Chief Minister Uddhav Thackeray, who heads Maharashtra’s state government, told media. Hundreds of villages and towns were without electricity and drinking water.