Storms kill at least 78 in Rajasthan, Uttar Pradesh

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A damaged electric pole is pictured in a market after strong winds and dust storm in Alwar, in Rajasthan, India May 3, 2018. REUTERS/Stringer

NEW DELHI – Hail and rain storms knocked down power poles and uprooted trees, killing at least 78 people in northern and western India, government officials said on Thursday.

Thirty-three people were killed on Wednesday in the western desert state of Rajasthan and 45 in the northern state of Uttar Pradesh, authorities said.

“We experienced a fierce storm, with an unusually high wind speed, and as a result, 33 people died in Alwar, Dholpur and Bharatpur districts of Rajasthan,” Hemant Gera, responsible for relief and disaster management in Rajasthan, told Reuters by phone from Jaipur, the state capital.

Storms lashed four districts of Uttar Pradesh, Saharanpur, Bareilly, Bijnore and Agra.

Heavy rain and high winds knocked down electricity poles and trees, blocked roads and disrupted power supplies in the worst affected areas.

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