Himachal Pradesh Devastated by Unprecedented Rainfall: 71 Lives Lost and ₹7,500 Crore Worth of Damage
In a tragic series of events that unfolded from August 13 to 15, the picturesque state of Himachal Pradesh in India has been hit hard by relentless rains, leading to severe losses in both lives and infrastructure. As authorities struggle to cope with the aftermath, the region grapples with an unprecedented crisis.
Lives Lost in Rain’s Wrath
Amidst the torrential downpours, the state has mourned the loss of a minimum of 71 lives due to various rain-related incidents. These incidents have left families shattered and communities reeling from the sudden tragedies. State officials have confirmed the toll, sharing the distressing news with the Press Trust of India (PTI).
Economic Setbacks and Damage Incurred
The heavy rains have not only claimed lives but also dealt a significant blow to the state’s economy. The financial toll of the disaster has been estimated at a staggering ₹7,500 crore. This unforeseen and immense loss underscores the urgent need for support and recovery efforts in the affected areas.
The span from August 13 to 15 witnessed destructions on an unprecedented scale, surpassing even the havoc wreaked by the previous month of July. 1,762 houses have been completely destroyed, while 8,952 houses have suffered partial damage. The widespread destruction has left families homeless, and communities shattered.
Looming Threat of Landslides
The natural landscape of Himachal Pradesh has been scarred by a staggering 113 landslides during this monsoon season. These landslides serve as a stark reminder of the challenges posed by nature’s fury. The threat of landslides further complicates the recovery efforts and poses a constant danger to the people living in the region.
Efforts to Ensure Safety
Dedicated efforts are being made by authorities to guarantee the safety of residents who have been affected by the calamity. A joint effort involving District Magistrates, police, National Disaster Response Force (NDRF), State Disaster Response Force (SDRF), and local citizens is underway for large-scale relocations. This collaborative endeavor aims to provide a secure environment for those affected by the calamity.
Disruption in Education
The inclement weather has forced the closure of all educational institutions in Himachal Pradesh. Schools and colleges have remained shut, affecting the education of countless students. Even Himachal Pradesh University has suspended its teaching activities until August 19, highlighting the severity of the situation.
Struggles in Shimla
Shimla, a renowned hill station in Himachal Pradesh, has been grappling with recurring landslides. Due to blocked roads and inaccessible routes, all educational institutes in Shimla were compelled to close temporarily. This further exacerbates the challenges faced by both residents and authorities.
Urgent Plea to the Central Government
Considering the dire circumstances, the Himachal Pradesh government has urgently appealed to the Central government to declare the situation a national calamity. This plea underscores the urgent need for additional resources and support to aid in the recovery and rehabilitation efforts in the state.
Rainfall Beyond Expectations
The ongoing monsoon season in Himachal Pradesh has defied expectations, with the region experiencing a higher-than-average amount of rainfall until August. An impressive total of 742mm of rainfall has been recorded, surpassing the typical average of 730mm.
Historic Calamity and Lasting Impact
The heavy rains that occurred in July have left a somber mark on the region’s history. This event has been deemed the most devastating natural calamity in the past 50 years. The consequences of this historic disaster have reshaped the landscape and profoundly impacted the lives of the people of Himachal Pradesh.
In the face of this unprecedented crisis, Himachal Pradesh stands resilient, as efforts continue to save lives, provide relief, and begin the arduous journey of rebuilding what has been lost.