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33 dead as strong winds, rains lash Bihar

Patna: As many as 33 people have died in 16 districts of Bihar due to gale storms, lightning and heavy rains. Chief Minister Nitish Kumar on Friday announced financial aid of Rs 4 lakh each to the kin of the people who lost their lives in the hailstorm. The CM's office said after assessing crop and house damage, instructions will be given to provide assistance to the affected families.

Heavy rains accompanied by strong winds and lightning have hit several districts of Bihar since the afternoon of May 19, leaving a trail of destruction, including uprooted trees, which have obstructed roads and damaged electric poles, interrupted vehicular travel and power supply.

Prime Minister Narendra Modi expressed grief over the incidents and said: "I am deeply saddened to see that many people died in the incidents of thunderstorm and lightning in several districts of Bihar. May God give strength to the bereaved families to bear this immense loss."

PM Modi also said the local administration under the supervision of the state government was actively engaged in relief and rescue work.

Shah came out with a tweet expressing similar sentiments. The deaths have been reported from 16 out of 38 districts of the state.

Bhagalpur has accounted for the maximum number of seven fatalities, followed by Muzaffarpur (six), Saran and Lakhisarai (three each) and Munger and Samastipur (two each).

In addition, one death each has been reported in Nalanda, Begusarai, Khagaria, Jamui, Katihar, Araria, Jehanabad, Purnea, Darbhanga and Banka districts.

The Patna Meteorological Centre has forecast thunderstorm with lightning with a gusty wind speed between 30/40 kmph at isolated places across Bihar for the next two days. It has also issued a 'yellow' warning for lightning and thunderstorm activity in West Champaran, East Champaran, Gopalganj, Sheohar, Sitamarhi, Muzaffarpur, Darbhanga, Madhubani, Saharsa, Madhepura, Supaul, Araria, Kishanganj, Purnea, and Katihar.

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