At least 92 people were killed by lightning in various districts of Bihar, and 24 in Uttar Pradesh while many people were reported to be injured as heavy rain and thunderstorms lashed several areas of north India, the state Disaster Management Department (DMD) said on Friday, June 26. Gopalganj district recorded the highest number of deaths with 13 people losing their lives.
Apart from this, three persons were killed by lightning in Khagaria and Aurangabad districts each, two each in Jehanabad, Kishanganj, West Champaran, Jamui, Purnia, Supaul, Kaimur and Buxar and one each died in Saran, Shivhar, Samastipur, Madhepura and Sitamarhi, according to officials.
Gopalganj District Collector Arshad Aziz told that according to information received so far, 12 to 13 people have died in lightning strikes in the district. He appealed to the people to remain indoors during the rain and not to stand under trees if outside.
Most of the people who died were working in the fields
Most of the people who died were working in the fields. The injured have been admitted in hospitals. Heavy rain with thunderstorms and lightning has lashed various parts of Bihar even before the onset of the monsoon in the state.
Meanwhile, in Uttar Pradesh, in the midst of the ongoing coronavirus crisis, 24 people died in lightning strikes in the state amid heavy rain and thunderstorm. Out of them, nine died in Deoria district alone.
Prime Minister Narendra Modi expressed his condolences after lightning strikes and thunderstorms in Bihar, injured many and caused widespread damage to property in the last two days.
The state disaster management department said 23 districts of the state were gravely affected with Gopalganj accounting for the maximum number of casualties at 13. Uttar Pradesh has also been affected by the thunderstorms and has reported casualties.
State govt engaged in relief work with promptness: PM Modi expresses anguish
PM Modi expressed his anguish at the loss of lives and said the state governments are working towards relief and rehabilitation.
"Received tragic news about death of several people in some districts of Uttar Pradesh and Bihar due to heavy rains and lightning. The state governments are engaged in relief work with promptness," he tweeted in Hindi.
Reports from districts said more than 20 people were injured and admitted to hospital. Lightning strikes has also caused widespread damage to houses and properties of the residents.
Bihar Chief Minister Nitish Kumar has announced a compensation of Rs 4 lakh for the families of the victims. Kumar has also appealed to everyone to remain alert and stay indoors as much as possible during the storms.
Home Minister Amit Shah also expressed grief on the tragedy. "I am extremely saddened by the death of many people in Uttar Pradesh and Bihar due to heavy rain and lightning. Relief work is going on fast in both the states. I express my condolences to the families of those who have lost their lives in this disaster and wish the injured to be well soon," he tweeted in Hindi.