Flash floods claim another 24 lives across country

F.P. Report
ISLAMABAD: Another 24 people have lost their lives in flash floods caused by torrential downpours across Pakistan over the past 24 hours, pushing the overall toll to over 1314, National Disaster Management Authority (NDMA) statistics, reveal on Monday.
According to a report issued by National Disaster Management Authority (NDMA), the majority of the deaths have been reported in Pakistan’s Sindh province, where hundreds of thousands of people have been stranded by floods triggered by heavy rains. At least 19 people – including two women and four children – have died in Sindh in the last 24 hours due to flood-related incidents.
Meanwhile, three people lost their lives in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa due to roof collapse and flash floods in various districts including one man in Tank, and two women in Dera Ismail Khan. In Punjab, one death was reported while 107 people sustained injuries in the past 24 hours, including 41 women, and eight children.
The NDMA, in its report, stated that said that 1,314 people have died since June 14, including 262 women, and 458 children while at least 12,703 individuals got injured since the onset of the rainy season. At least 80 districts across the country are still affected by rains and floods. A day earlier, the National Flood Response & Coordination Centre (NFRCC) said that overall 3,146 people were evacuated to safer localities including 479 trapped citizens during the last 24 hours. The army aviation helicopters operated 307 flights and evacuated stranded citizens from different flooded areas. Moreover, 44 tons of rations and medicines have been transported by the army helicopters during the last 24 hours.
Meanwhile, water levels in Sindh’s Manchhar Lake and parts of the Dadu district were on the rise on Saturday as the country struggled in the face of devastating floods, which have claimed over 1,300 lives since mid-June, and authorities prepared for more evacuations from areas at risk of flooding.
Record monsoon rains and melting glaciers in Pakistan’s northern mountains have brought floods that have killed 1,314 people since June 14, with 24 deaths reported over the past 24 hours, according to the National Disaster Management Authority (NDMA).
According to the official in charge of the irrigation cell for Manchhar Lake, Sher Mohammad Mallah, the water level in the freshwater body had risen to 125 reduced levels (RL) by Monday afternoon, up from 123.2RL recorded yesterday night. He told media that the lake’s protective dykes at RD-80, 75, 20 and 10 were “washed over” by waves and strong winds.
A dyke of Manchhar was breached on Sunday in face of the threat of densely populated areas of Sehwan and Bhan Saeedabad being flooded. According to officials, the cut made between RD-14 and RD-15 will allow water to eventually reach the Indus River — something not happening for the past two days as the river was flowing in ‘high flood’ between Sukkur and Kotri barrages.
However, the breach, dubbed a “relief cut”, was expected to flood at least five union councils (UCs) of Dadu — Jaffarabad, Cha­nna, Arazi, Bubak and Wahur. Moreover a Reuters report said the breach would displaced up to 100,000 people. The media quoted area residents as saying on Monday that the five UCs had been flooded but the reports could not be verified from any official sources.
Meanwhile, Jamshoro Deputy Commissioner (DC) Fariduddin Mustafa said 25 boats had been arranged for evacuations from areas at risk, from where several families and individuals had already been evacuated. Separately, Dadu DC Murtaza Ali Shah told media that water levels were rising at the ring embankments of Johi and Mehar areas, as well as in the Main Nara Valley Drain, also called Right Bank Outfall Drain-I.
“These areas have remained protected from floods so far, but the threat lingers,” he said. Authorities on Monday were also planning on making more cuts to the lake’s protective dykes in light of the increasing waterflows from Main Nara Valley Drain (MNVD). “The decision has been taken but it has not yet implemented”, said an irrigation officer, requesting anonymity. According to him, the two cuts would be given at RD-16 and RD-52.
However, another administrative official who spoke to the media on the condition of anonymity said that one cut was likely at RD-52. The second official claimed that the situation “might change and River Indus could start accepting water from the lake”. According to the irrigation official, MNVD was bringing heavy flows.
“Our dilemma is that just like the Indus is not accepting water from the lake, the lake is not accepting water from MNVD,” he said. He went on to say that continuous water discharge was also putting pressure on Dadu city. The latest data from the irrigation department showed that the Indus was witnessing medium flood at Sukkur and high flood at Kotri barrage. At 6pm, Kotri barrage witnessed another increase in upstream flows. Kotri upstream discharge was recorded at 603,327 cusecs and 584272 cusecs downstream, recording a rise of 15,560 cusecs in the last 24 hours.