MUMBAI [Maha Media]: Monsoon showers wreaked havoc in Maharashtra with as many as 129 people losing their lives in rain-related incidents and multiple landslides in the state during the last two days. Of the 129 fatalities, 38 people died during a landslide in coastal Raigad district’s Mahad tehsil on Thursday, a senior official from the state disaster management department told PTI.
Further, as many as 84,452 people under the Pune division were evacuated on Friday, officials said adding that many people have been swept away in floodwaters and are missing.
Meanwhile, the India Meteorological Department (IMD) has issued a “red alert” for Satara, forecasting "extremely heavy rainfall" in the next 24 hours in the hilly `ghat' areas of this Western Maharashtra district where about 30 persons are missing and 27 others died after landslides. The IMD has also issued an “orange alert” for Pune and Kolhapur districts.
"The death toll in Maharashtra in the last 48 hours has reached 129. Most of the deaths are from Raigad and Satara districts," an official said on Friday.
The landslide in Raigad district took place near Talai village in Mahad tehsil on Thursday evening. NDRF teams and local officials were engaged in rescue work in Mahad.
Landslides also hit Ambeghar and Mirgaon villages in Satara's Patan tehsil during Thursday night, burying a total of eight houses, said Ajay Kumar Bansal, Superintendent of Police, Satara rural.
But no deaths have been confirmed in the two incidents by local officials so far.
Besides, 10 persons were feared trapped after a landslide in the coastal Ratnagiri district.
Eleven people, including eight Nepalese workers, were rescued in the nick of time before the bus in which they were traveling was swept away in the flooded Chikodi river in Kolhapur district, police said.
The incident took place around 2.30 am at Pangire village in Bhudargad tehsil. A case was registered against the driver of the private bus, Ajit Pardeshi (39), for reckless driving, the police said.
Pardeshi was detained and booked IPC section 307 (attempt to murder) driving on the flooded bridge, they said.
In another incident in the wee hours of Friday, a Ratnagiri-bound bus of the Karnataka government's transport service got stranded in water on Kolhapur-Panhala road. As many as 25 passengers were safely evacuated, the police said.
As many as 84,452 people, including over 40,000 in Kolhapur district, were shifted to safer places in Western Maharashtra's Pune division as rains battered the region and rivers were in spate, officials said.
The Panchganga river near the Kolhapur city was flowing at a level higher than that witnessed during the peak of floods in 2019, officials said.
Besides Pune and Kolhapur, the division also includes the districts of Sangli and Satara. Satara is hit hard, especially by heavy rains and landslides.
Rescue teams of the National Disaster Response Force, State Disaster Response Force and other agencies shifted people to safer locations by Friday evening, the officials said.
Six teams of the Indian Army and Navy are expected to join the rescue work on Saturday morning.
As many as 54 villages were completed affected due to the floods while 821 were partially affected, officials said.
As many as 40,882 persons have been shifted from flood-affected areas in Kolhapur district alone.
Five people -- two in Radhanagari, two in Chandgad and one in Kagal tehsil -- died in rain-related incidents in Kolhapur district, officials said.
At least 39 roads, including 10 state highways, are closed for traffic due to the floods in Kolhapur district.
Three NDRF teams have been pressed into rescue operation. "Five additional teams of NDRF have been sought. One team of the Army is also reaching," the officials said.
In neighboring Sangli district, over 36,000 people from 7,000 families have been shifted to safer places, the officials said.
The Maharashtra government announced an ex-gratia of Rs five lakh each to the kin of people who have died in landslides triggered by heavy rains in different parts of the state.