Wednesday May 22, 2024

At least 24 killed by lightning strikes in Balochistan, Punjab

PMD forecasts more rains in over 20 districts of Balochistan

By Shahab Umer
April 13, 2024

Lightning has killed at least 24 people in Balochistan and Punjab as torrential rains battered the provinces, officials said on Saturday.

Amid the heavy rainfall, lightning claimed 16 lives in South Punjab and 8 in different areas of Balochistan.

Two youths Farid Ahmed and Jabir Ahmed, while sitting in a garden of Tanak area in Surab district, died as soon as lightning struck them, while one other person got wounded in the incident. In two separate incidents, lightning killed one person in Pishin and another in Dera Bugti.

Electric discharge from cloud killed at least seven people in Rahim Yar Khan including two children in Basti Kalwar, one person in Thul Hassan, a wife and husband in Basti Khokhran Feroza, a shepherd in Mari Allah Bachaya and a farmer in Khan Bela. 

Whereas, an eight-year-old kid died in Chak-113 area and one person died in Khairpur Daha of Bahawalpur district by lightning. A woman died in a similar incident in Lodhran.

After westerly waves entered here, thunderstorms, rains and dusty winds affected some parts of Punjab and most parts of Balochistan including Quetta, where electricity breakdown on several feeders suspended the power supply to the metropolis since Friday afternoon.

Electricity breakdown on scores of feeders plunged the cities into darkness with no power in most of the areas in Quetta since last afternoon.

Meanwhile, the weather became cold because of hailstorm in Washuk, Khuzdar, Surab, Kalat, Mastung, Nushki, Bolan and Pashin. Whereas Nushki, Kolpur and Mastung experienced rain with thunder and lightning.

Rainwater drains are feared to get flooded soon as Zhob, Sherani, Barkhan, Mosakhel, Kohlu, Sibbi, Jhal Magsi, Loralai, Ziarat, Quetta, Chaman, Pishin, Qila Abdullah, Qila Saifullah, Lasbela, Qalat, Khuzdar, Ziarat, Muslim Bagh, Turbat, Harnai, Naseerabad, Jafferabad, Chaghi, Panjgur, Gwadar and Ketch experienced intermitted heavy rains and the districts are expected to receive more in next 48 hours.

On the other hand, the spokesperson of the Balochistan government said instructions have been issued to all commissioners and deputy commissioners viewing the unusual rains and weather conditions in the province.

The district disaster management authorities have been alerted while Chief Minister Sardar Sarfaraz Bugti has ordered action to remove encroachments from all natural drainage channels, he said.

Flood destroys several houses amid forecast for more rains

The Pakistan Meteorological Department (PMD) said more rain was expected in Kohlu, Quetta, Zhob, Sherani, Barkhan, Mosakhel, Sibbi, Jhal Magsi, Chaman, Pishin, Qila Abdullah, Qila Saifullah, Lasbela, Qalat Khuzdar, Ketch, Harnai, Nasirabad, Jafirabad, Chaghi, Panjgur and Gawadar.

Provincial Disaster Management Authority (PDMA) Director General Jahanzaib Khan said Hamidabad area of Pishin has been flooded after rain.

At least 15 houses were destroyed in the flood, while people were being evacuated to a safe location, he said.

Khan said two PDMA teams, ambulances and heavy machinery had been dispatched to the affected area.

The PMD said Zhob received 40mm rain, Quetta 22mm, Barkhan 9mm and Panjgur 1mm during the last 24 hours.