Heavy rain and snow destroy 300 houses in west Pakistan

Karachi: Heavy rains and snowfall in west Pakistan have destroyed at least 300 homes and rendered thousands homeless, forcing authorities to deploy the Army for emergency rescue operations, according to media reports on Wednesday.

A cyclonic storm hit Balochistan province on Monday night. Low-lying Makran division was the most affected, with its Gwadar region receiving 10 cm of rain in just 20 hours on Monday and Tuesday, the Dawn newspaper reported.

The Makran Coastal Highway – connecting Gwadar to Karachi – was washed away. Power supply was yet to be restored after it snapped on Tuesday morning.

Similarly, water supply to homes was temporarily suspended after floodwaters entered the pumping stations at Akra Kaur, Swad and Shadi Kur dams.

The runway of Gwadar Airport was flooded after water rushed in from nearby mountains.

Though no loss of life was not reported, over 300 mud-homes have been destroyed in Turbat, Gwadar, Pasni, Jiwani and other areas in the division, Commissioner of Makran division Shabbir Mengal told the daily.

The rains have left thousands homeless, who were shifted to safe enclosures through the Pakistan Navy’s boats.

The Pakistan Army, Pakistan Navy and Frontier Corps are taking up the rescue operations and helping the civic administration to install key infrastructure, Geo News reported, quoting an official statement.

Officials said the rescue works have been complicated by the extremely low temperatures in the province.

The Pakistan Meteorological Department has predicted more rains till the end of the week.

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