At least 11 dead, thousands evacuated as flash floods hit western India

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Damaged vehicles are seen following heavy rains in Pune, September 26, 2019. REUTERS/Jignesh Mistry

MUMBAI (Reuters) – At least 11 people have been killed and six are missing after Pune and its neighbouring areas were hit by heavy rain and flash floods, a government official said on Wednesday.

More than 28,000 people have been evacuated from low-lying areas and the local administration is on alert for more rain, Deepak Mhaisekar told Reuters.

Pune, which is around 200 kilometres (124 miles) from Mumbai, has received 113% more rainfall than average since the start of the monsoon season in early June, a weather department official said.

Of the 11 deaths, five occurred in Pune when a wall collapsed, said Mhaisekar.

South Asia gets monsoon rain annually during the June-September months which cause fatalities and mass displacement.

India’s monsoons, which deliver more than 70% of the country’s annual rainfall, are crucial for farm output and economic growth, but rainfall often weakens the foundations of poorly built walls and buildings resulting in deaths.

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