Karachi, Aug 28 (IANS) At least 19 people were killed in various rain-related incidents in Karachi, as the Pakistani city recorded its highest downpour in a day since 1967, officials said.
The Met department said Karachi received 223.5 mm of rain in just 12 hours on Thursday alone, the highest amount of rain ever recorded in a single day in the city, reports Dawn news.
The previous 24-hour record was on July 26, 1967, when 211.3 mm was recorded at Masroor base.
Meteorological officials said downpours in August have shattered 89-year-old records for the city.
The crisis-like situation led Sindh Chief Minister Murad Ali Shah to announce a public holiday on Saturday.
The Navy has deployed emergency response teams in aid of the civil administration in various areas that were equipped with boats and other life-saving equipment.
During the operation, the navy teams also rescued 55 people trapped in the flooded areas of Malir and Korangi Crossing, while 20 families stranded in Sammoo Goth were also evacuated to a safe location.
Meanwhile, many major roads in the city witnessed severe traffic jams and several areas of Karachi also experienced power outages, Dawn news reported.
Some areas of the city have been without power for more than 10 hours.
Power was suspended in several areas as a precautionary measure, the Karachi Electric’s spokesperson said.
Responding to the unprecedented monsoon spell in Karachi, Prime Minister Imran Khan said that his government would “not abandon” the city’s people “in their time of crisis”.
In a series of tweets, the premier said that the federal government was “fully cognisant” of the devastation brought about by the rainfall, adding: “I am personally monitoring the relief and rescue operations, and am in constant contact with National Disaster Management Authority (NDMA) chairman and Sindh Governor for regular updates.”
Sindh Governor Imran Ismail termed the situation “unusual and abnormal” adding that an “emergency response” was required.
Opposition PPP chief Bilawal Bhutto-Zardari, in a tweet, said that this year, Sindh has seen the “worst monsoons in 90 years”.