20 people fall victim to lightning as widespread heavy rain batters Thar

November 15, 2019

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Unofficial figures put the number of deaths at 23 as reports of lightning and casualties were still coming in when this report was filed at around midnight Thursday.  — AP/File
Unofficial figures put the number of deaths at 23 as reports of lightning and casualties were still coming in when this report was filed at around midnight Thursday. — AP/File

MITHI: At least 20 men, women and children died when lightning struck rural areas of Mithi, Chhachhi near Islamkot town, Ram Singh Sodho village near Diplo town and several other villages during widespread rains in Tharparkar district that began battering the desert region late on Wednesday night and continued into Thursday.

Unofficial figures put the number of deaths at 23 as reports of lightning and casualties were still coming in when this report was filed at around midnight Thursday.

There are also reports of hundreds of animals that have perished in the lightning strikes and fire that followed in the affected areas.

Three persons died during Wednesday’s rain. Sukhan Soomro, 20, and Mushtaq Soomro were killed in Chhachhi village near Islamkot, and 28-year-old Jodh Singh died in Ram Singh Sodho village near Diplo town.

Toll may rise as reports of fatalities were still coming in

As the rain continued on Thursday, lightning strikes played havoc across Tharparkar district and as many as 17 persons including 10 women and several hundred livestock perished.

According to details, Sona Dohat, 35, was killed in Udani village near Chhachhro town, Jamal Shoro and Samad Soomro died in villages of Nagarparkar and Diplo talukas. Three of a family — Muqeema, Sakina, and Abdul Razzak Samejo — were killed in Morasiyo village near Chhachhro and 10-year-old Neto Bheel was killed in Akliyyoon village near Kantio.

Kamla Meghwar, 16, met her death in Borli Mousepota village near Islamkot and Samani Samejo, 35, died in Meghi Jo Taar village near Chhachhro. Jamoon Kolhi, 30, was killed in Dhabi village near Mithi and Karamat Nohrio, 40, was killed in Ketari village near Islamkot.

Tayab Arisar, 25, was struck by lightning in Mithryo village near Islamkot and died while Amboon Kolhi, 20, was killed in Kolhi locality in Mithi town.

Meanwhile, a man and three women were killed in Achhro Thar in Sanghar district during heavy rainfall.

Moreover, at least 30 persons suffered injuries in lightning strike incidents and were brought to hospitals in Mithi, Islamkot and Chhachhro towns. Besides, several cattle heads were killed in Sakri, Ismail Otho and other villages during continuous rainfall.

Around 27mm rainfall was recorded in the hilly town of Nagarparkar by Thursday evening.

MIRPURKHAS: Heavy rain and strong winds battered Jhuddo taluka on Thursday as rainwater accumulated on roads and streets and daily life came to a standstill for a few hours.

It continued to rain for half an hour causing temperature to drop and making the wind cold. Several incidents of lighting were reported from different areas of the district but luckily no one was reported hurt.

SUKKUR: Heavy rain and lightning preceded by dust storm paralysed life in Thull, Kandhkot, Kashmore, Ghouspur, Ghotki and surrounding areas on Thursday.

It was the first winter shower that came after severe dust storm in Thull, Kandhkot, Kashmore, Ghouspur, Ghotki and surrounding areas and caused severe injuries to several people.

Published in Dawn, November 15th, 2019