More than 1,550 people have lost their lives in the last five years during monsoon season in Himachal Pradesh, state disaster management director Sudesh Mokhta said. Providing data, Mr. Mokhta said the highest 476 people died in 2021 monsoon, followed by 343 in 2018, 276 in the current year so far, 240 in 2020 and 218 in 2019.
A total of 1,553 people have died in the last five monsoons, he said.
Apart from 276 deaths from June 29 to August 27 in 2022, as many as 508 people sustained injuries while nine persons went missing in the rain-related incidents during the period. Of 276 deaths, the highest 134 died in 49 road accidents, 36 in as many incidents of tree and rock fall, 30 in 12 drowning incidents, 19 in 75 landslides, five in 65 flash floods, three in 13 incidents of cloudbursts and 49 in other 29 incidents of electrocution, lightning, snakebite and fire, Mr. Mokhta said. Besides, the government property worth ₹6,537.39 crore was destroyed in the monsoons in the last five years. The highest ₹1,732.58 crore loss to government property occurred in 2022, followed by ₹1,578.08 crore in 2018, ₹1,151.72 crore in 2021, ₹1,202.69 crore in 2019 and ₹8,72.32 crore in 2020.
In 2022 itself, the public works department lost property worth ₹949.62 crore, followed by ₹710.23 crore to Jal Shakti Vibhag and ₹5.72 crore to electricity department, he said. Besides, 12,444 houses were damaged in monsoons in the five years, Mr. Mokhta said. The highest 5,160 houses were damaged in 2018, followed by 3,031 in 2019, 1,976 in 2021, 1,346 in 2020 and 931 in 2022. Meanwhile, a six-member central team began its state visit from Sunday to assess the damage, he added.
Mr. Mokhta said that the Inter-Ministerial Central Team (IMCT), headed by Sunil Kumar Barnwal, Joint Secretary, Ministry of Home Affairs, will assess the damage caused by natural calamities – cloudbursts, flash floods and landslides — during the ongoing monsoon season.
The team will be divided into two groups. While the first group will visit Kangra and Chamba districts, the second will tour Kullu and Mandi districts on August 28 and 29, he said. After that, a debriefing meeting with state-level officers will be held in Shimla on August 30.