As a wave of rains engulfed different parts of Pakistan, the twin cities also received significant rain showers.
It started raining in various parts of Rawalpindi and Islamabad on Friday morning and continued intermittently till the afternoon. From 8am to 5pm on Friday, the Pakistan Meteorological Department (PMD) had recorded around 55 millimetres (mm) of rain in the twin cities.
Meanwhile, the federal capital received around 23 mm of rain over a 24-hour period on Thursday, while Rawalpindi saw just around 3mm over the same time period. The PMD has predicted that rains will continue in the twin cities overnight and on Saturday.
While the rain and cloudy weather presented most residents with much-needed relief from days of hot weather, they also brought tragedy for a family in sector E-11’s katchi abadi.
Fazal Karim lost his two sons, six-month-old Rehman and eight-year-old Shahzad, as the blocks in the house’s wall came loose and dislodged the roof’s girder; which fell on the children, the police said. His wife and daughter, who were also present in the house at the time, were injured in the accident.
The infant was taken to the Pakistan Institute of Medical Sciences (PIMS) hospital where he died of the injuries. Karim is a native of Cherat in Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa and works at a roadside eatery in the capital, according to the police officer.
Minor damage from flooding of residential areas was reported in some areas of Rawalpindi.
Storm drains that converge near Girja Road in Rawalpindi — around six kilometers west of Lalkurti — erupted with water, flooding the nearby residential area of Chak Jalaldin.
Low-lying areas in Rawalpindi such as Arya Muhalla, Nadeem Colony and Javed Colony were temporarily affected by the rain in the morning, but the standing water in these areas had receded by noon as the intensity of rain decreased.
Ajmal Khan, a resident of Nadeem Colony, said the drains in the streets are not cleaned regularly by the municipal authorities. Khan said the houses in the colony — which has a history of getting inundated — did not get flooded this season but large puddles of water are a common sight when the rain picks up pace.
On Friday, the level of water in Nullah Leh rose initially as rain lashed Rawalpindi. But by 4pm, the water level in the nullah was at 6.36 feet at Gawalmandi and at 6.07 feet at Katarian, according to the Rawalpindi Flood Control Cell, which deals exclusively with Nullah Leh. On-duty officials at the cell said the water level was “decreasing.”
A pre-alert is issued when the water in Leh reaches 11 feet and an alert is generated when the water rises to 12 feet, according to the Cell.
In Islamabad, water pooled at the underpasses in the city briefly but drained off quickly. There were no reports of major damage to property or flash flooding in the capital, according to the Capital Development Authority (CDA) Flood Relief Cell.
Published in The Express Tribune, August 3rd, 2013.