Seven dead in south India pre-monsoon rains

Friday, May 24, 2024

THIRUVANANTHPURAM, India: At least seven people have died in India’s southern state of Kerala after heavier than normal pre-monsoon rains, authorities said, even as much of South Asia grappled with a heatwave.

Pre-monsoon rains were 18 percent above normal in Kerala this year, causing flooding in parts and disrupting flights at the Kozhikode airport, officials said.

According to the state’s Disaster Management Authority (KSDMA), a 70-year-old man died in a lightning strike in Kasaragod district on Wednesday, while brothers aged 18 and 21 died after falling into a quarry filled with water in Palakkad on Tuesday. Four people also died in Idukki and Pathanamthitta districts after falling into water, said an official at the SDMA.

The local weather department has issued a red alert, warning of extremely heavy rainfall in three districts on Thursday.

In contrast to Kerala, most of India faced heatwaves, with India’s capital New Delhi ordering the closure of schools earlier this week.

Temperatures often peak during May, but India’s weather department was predicting seven to ten heatwave days in northwestern regions this month, compared to the usual two to three days.