Himachal Pradesh: Heavy rains, landslides continue to claim lives

Kangra, Mandi, Shimla, and Kullu are under red alert where heavy to very heavy rainfall is expected between August 23-24.

Yasmin Tinwala

Road closure due to landslide near Chalnair / Image-X/@TTRHimachal

The death toll arising from rain-related incidents in the Indian state of Himachal Pradesh (HP) this month has reached 120 as of August 23 bringing the total loss of lives to 238 since heavy rains lashed the state last month.

The destruction to property and loss of life is predicted to continue as the Indian Meteorological Department (IMD) issued a red alert warning for several parts of four districts – Kangra, Kullu, Mandi, and Shimla. As per the alert heavy to very heavy rainfall is expected between August 23-24. A yellow alert has been issued for August 25-26 by the weather department across parts of the state. 

While search and rescue operations are in full-swing, the state’s Chief Minister Sukhvinder Singh Sukhu shared timely updates regarding measures taken by the government during the ongoing crisis. He urged the people to refrain from non-essential travel through roadways, and to avoid flood and landslide-prone areas, while assuring that the government was closely monitoring the situation.

As per media reports, 12 people died on August 23 in different parts of HP. Seven out of the 12 deceased died due to landslides in Shimla and Mandi districts. Three people died from electrocution, one died from drowning, and another died after falling from a height, as per the state emergency operation center. 

The Himachal Pradesh police department, Chamba police, Shimla police, HP Traffic, Tourist & Railway are posting regular updates on road closures alongside other important information through their official pages on X, formerly Twitter. 

The state has established the Aapda Raahat Kosh 2023 with the primary objective of aiding in the restoration of damages caused by the heavy monsoon rains. Chief Minister’s of other states including Tamil Nadu Chief Minister M.K. Stalin, Rajasthan Chief Minister Ashok Gehlot have donated financial assistance to the rain-lashed state. 


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