Nature’s fury claims lives:Seven killed, over 60 hurt in Rautahat, Sarlahi

RAUTAHAT: Incessant rainfall and strong storm claimed the lives of seven persons and injured over 60 in different places of Rautahat and Sarlahi districts on Sunday.

Six persons, including four children, were killed and 60 persons were injured due to fierce storms at different places in Rautahat district. Most of the persons were killed when roofs of their houses caved in and trees felled by the storm hit them, the police said, adding that property worth over Rs 100,000 has been damaged.

Balkesi Devi (60) and Saraful Mahato's one year son of Pipara Pokhariya-1, Rampatiya Kumari Baitha (10) of Shitalpur-9, Amrita Kumari (9) of Dharampur-2, Shova Kumari Kanu (4) of Madwala-6 and Subbaraut Kurmi (50) of Karuniya-5 were killed when their houses were collapsed by the storm last night, District Police Office, Rautahat, said. The injured are undergoing treatment in District Hospital and local health centres.

The storm damaged property in 96 VDCs and a municipality in the district, collapsing houses and blowing away the roofs of the houses, police posts and schools, according to the police. The storm collapsed houses in Kathariya, Bramhapuri, Matsarai, Gangapipara, Bholihiya, Karuniya, Sangrampur, Auraiya and other VDCs, the police said. Power supply has been disrupted as electricity poles at different places in the district have been uprooted. Communication of the police has also been affected after the storm blew away a communication antenna installed at the building of District Police Office, the police said. "We have started evaluating the damages caused by the storm," Rautahat CDO Dr Kamleshwor Kumar Sinha said.

Meanwhile, a person was killed and at least two were injured when storm wreaked havoc in Sarlahi district. Binod Thapa (25) of Bhaktipur VDC-2 died when a tree felled by the storm hit him. "Thapa breathed his last while undergoing treatment in Hariwan-based Namuna Hospital," ASI Mahendra Shah said. Dulimaya Moktan (35) of Netragunj VDC-2 and Rama Ale (13) of Janakinagar-3 were injured in the incident.

The fierce storm also felled over 150 trees in the plot owned by Sagarmatha Forest Development Project, Binod Neupane, an official at the project, said. According to the District Police Office, Sarlahi, the storm affected over 30 VDCs in the district.