MIRPURKHAS: Lightning strikes killed three men, two others drowned in floodwater as downpour continued to wreak havoc on parts of Sindh, with breaches in the dykes of two major drains inundating dozens of villages.

Strong winds accompanying the showers blew away several makeshift camps of flood survivors along the roads and worsened the situation in low-lying areas of Mirpurkhas and Tharparkar districts.

Unrelenting rainfall during the past two days raised the level of floodwaters in Dhoro Puran and Left Bank Outfall Drains, while local authorities were yet to drain water from graveyards, residential areas, parks and playgrounds.

No official help had reached the flood-hit people after the latest blow as only a few organisations were providing them food and relief goods. The district administration had provided mosquito nets to its favourites, complained flood victims to journalists in Sindhri, Hussain Bux Marri, Digri and Jhuddo talukas. Mirwah Gorchani, Digri, Jhuddo, Naukot, Kot Ghulam Mohammad, Sindhri, Phuladyyoon, Hingorno, Samaro, Pithoro, Kunri, Jhilori and Khaan received moderate to heavy rainfall.

Rain caused Dhoro Puran dyke near Roshanabad in Jhuddo taluka, which had been plugged earlier, to develop a 20-foot-wide breach at the same place.

An irrigation official said the fresh showers disrupted the work on plugging breaches and draining out stagnant floodwater from the district through spinal drain.

Sources said Nara Canal Area Water Board director Mansoor Memon had advised commissioner Syed Ajaz Ali Shah during a briefing on Monday that floodwaters could not be drained out completely from the district till the removal of encroachments on natural rain drains and illegal dykes around farmland.

He set up a task force to ensure removal of all encroachment from natural rain drains and said Rangers personnel would also help in the removal of encroachments.

LBOD dyke breaches

Dozens of villages were submerged after a 100-foot-wide breach developed in LBOD in the wake of heavy rain at Qazi village near Jhuddo, sending villagers fleeing to main roads to save their lives.

In Dhani Bux Marri village and Jhuddo bypass area, a man and an elderly woman drowned in floodwaters. Their bodies were recovered and shifted to hospital.

Also, three men, Mohammad Yaqub, Moosa and Deedar Shar, were killed in lightning strikes reported from near Diplo town and Sindhri taluka.

Published in Dawn, September 13th, 2022

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