Rain pain continues for Mumbai; boulder crash kills five of family in Thane

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Mumbai/Thane/Raigad, Jul 19 (PTI) Five members of a family were killed on Monday after a boulder rolled down and crashed on their home due to incessant rains in Thane city, while seven people were feared drowned at separate places in Maharashtra as Mumbai reeled under downpour for the second day, leading to water-logging and disruption in local train services, officials said.

The India Meteorological Department (IMD) sounded a 'red alert' for Mumbai and other districts in the Konkan region, predicting extremely heavy rainfall at isolated places over the next 24 hours.

Mumbai and its neighbouring districts of Thane, Palghar and Raigad have been witnessing heavy rains since the last couple of days.

The torrential rains over the weekend claimed 30 lives in the metropolis.

Thane Municipal Corporation's Regional Disaster Management Cell chief Santosh Kadam said the boulder incident took place in the evening in Gholai Nagar, where five people - a husband-wife duo and their three minor children - were buried alive.

The bodies were retrieved from the debris by search and rescue personnel, he said.

'Two children were rescued after the incident. All the deceased, including three minors, were from the same family,' he said.

Kadam said the boulder crashed on a house in a 'chawl' (an old row tenement), trapping its seven occupants, all from the same family.

While two children (siblings), aged 5 and 18, were rescued, the five others died in the incident, he said.

The deceased were identified as Prabhu Sudam Yadav (45), his wife Vidhavatidevi Yadav (40) and their children Ravikisan (12) Simaran (10) and Sandhya (3), Kadam said.

People have been shifted from the houses in the vicinity as a precautionary measure, he added.

State Urban Development Minister Eknath Shinde, who is also the Thane Guardian Minister, visited the site of the boulder crash and later announced a compensation of Rs 5 lakh to each of the deceased.

The minister also visited the civic hospital where the two injured siblings are admitted and enquired about their condition.

He directed the civic body to immediately relocate those staying in dangerous hutments to safer places.

Calling the incident unfortunate, BJP Thane city and district president and MLC Niranjan Davkhare, who also visited the site and later the hospital, said there were rampant unauthorised constructions in hillocks in Kalwa.

Thane district also continued to face the fury of incessant rains through the day with four persons feared drowned in swollen water bodies, officials said.

A release from the district administration said one Surya Rajput, a resident of Mansarovar in Navi Mumbai, was washed away in a river in Sahapur, while 19-year-old Jubed Ansari met a similar fate in Chavindra in Bhiwandi town.

A man was washed away in Ganesh Ghat in Dombivali, while a 9-year-old boy, identified as Abdul Rehman Hurera, was feared drowned in Mira Road, it said.

The release said the railway bridge in Vashind was submerged and 25 villages were cut off, while the condition of a bridge in Khadipar in Bhiwandi and Runde in Murbad were similar.

It also said water entered a godown in Mumbra where goats were kept for Bakri Eid celebrations, leading to the death of 15 animals while 14 were saved.

Masunda lake in Thane city overflowed, it said.

In neighbouring Palghar district, 50 villagers were rescued in Nandale in the early hours of the day after they got marooned due to the rains.

Bhiwani Nizampur Municipal Corporation PRO Milinf Palsule said some 1,000 people were shifted to safety in the township, with areas like Idgah Road and Mhada Colony being the worst affected.

In another incident, some makeshift homes collapsed in Shivaji Nagar area of Kasara due to rains, a Thane civic official said.

Though no was injured, families in the area were shifted and accommodated in a nearby Zilla Parishad school, he said.

Another official said bridges in Vasai, Bhiwandi and Murbad towns in Thane and Palghar districts had been submerged in water due to downpour, leading to heavy disruptions to traffic in these areas.

On Monday, the Raigad disaster management department said three people were feared drowned at separate places in the district, which was also lashed by heavy rains.

During the day in Mumbai, the Central Railway (CR) was forced to suspend its suburban train operations on the Main Line three times.

According to the Central Railway, due to extremely heavy rain and water-logging around Kalyan, trains passing via the station were stopped for around one hour since 8.15 pm.

Shivaji Sutar, chief spokesperson, CR, said after resumption, they were operating suburban services at slow speed.

'Due to bunching of trains in the section, trains are running late on CSMT-Karjat/ Khopoli line and the Titwala-Kasara UP and Down section,' he said.

He said Kalyan has recorded 138.5 mm rain between 8 am and 7 pm.

Local train services on the CR's slow line were suspended for about half-an-hour around 3 pm due to flooding on tracks between Kalwa and Mumbra stations in neighbouring Thane district, Sutar said.

The services were restored on the slow corridor by 3.35 pm, he said.

Earlier in the day, water-logging occurred between Vikhroli and Bhandup rail section following heavy showers in parts of the suburbs, Sutar said.

The suburban train services were suspended in that section of the Main Line from 10.35 am to 10.50 am as a precautionary measure, he said.

In the Kasara Ghat section, located about 130 km from Mumbai, a mudslide occurred on one of the three rail lines early Monday morning, Sutar said.

Traffic was affected only on the down line due to the mudslide, but trains were running on the middle and up lines, according to the Central Railway.

According to civic officials, bus services of the Brihanmumbai Electric Supply and Transport (BEST) were running normal, except for a few places in suburbs.

The eastern suburbs of Mumbai recorded 90.65 mm rainfall in the 24-hour period ended at 8 am on Monday, as compared to 48.88 mm rainfall in the island city and 51.89 mm rainfall in western suburbs, a BMC official said. PTI KK COR GK BNM RSY RSY

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