As the Met Office warned that more heavy rains were expected on Monday, the National Disaster Management Authority (NDMA) directed all concerned departments on Sunday to take precautionary measures to avoid further losses.
Monsoon downpours have inundated some main roads in the sprawling city of Karachi where life was literally paralysed on Saturday.
“We’ve called in the army, navy and rangers in Karachi to help with the rescue and relief activities,” NDMA spokesperson Brigadier Kamran Zia told The Express Tribune. According to him, the official death toll is half of unofficial tally.
Giving the break-up, Brig Zia said that 12 people have died in Punjab, eight in Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa, one in Balochistan and 20 in Sindh.
He warned that the situation could worsen in Kalat, Naseerabad and Loralai districts of Balochistan, and Dera Ghazi Khan and Rajanpur districts of south Punjab. In K-P, he said, Chitral is the hardest-hit district, where 90 houses and dozens of shops have been swept away by flooding mountain streams.
Meanwhile, Meteorological Department head Arif Mahmood predicted that more rains were expected across the country in the next 48 hours. “The next month is crucial. We are on high alert,” he added.
Scattered thunderstorm rain with isolated heavy rainfall is expected in Sindh, in eastern and coastal Balochistan, DG Khan and Kashmir. Scattered rain is also expected in Punjab, K-P and Gilgit.
Published in The Express Tribune, August 5th, 2013.
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