Authorities in the southern Indian state of Andhra Pradesh announced Saturday that at least 17 people have died and dozens more have gone missing as a result of days of severe rainfall.
Since Thursday, the state has been pounded by torrential rains, causing major flooding in at least five districts.
Late Friday night, the death toll increased to 17 after three individuals were murdered when a structure fell, according to authorities. Ten persons who were trapped beneath the rubble were recovered, but two remain unaccounted for.
At least a dozen people killed earlier on Friday when the bus they were riding was washed away by high rains. On Saturday, search and rescue activities for missing passengers continued.
Over the last two days, officials have reported a number of deaths from various areas, with officials warning that the figure could climb as rescue operations continue. Hundreds of people have been rescued and transported to shelter homes by the National Disaster Relief Force, which has been deployed to the hardest-hit and most vulnerable locations.
In one of the worst-affected districts, Kadapa, continuous rains and flooding caused officials to close the local airport until Thursday. Officials said dam and tank breaks have caused more floods, stranding hundreds of communities and trapping many families in their houses.
Although the country has had a protracted monsoon this year, scientists warn that climate change has compounded the problem by making downpours more severe and frequent.
Floods hit neighbouring Tamil Nadu state last week, while severe rains created landslides in southern Kerala state last month, killing at least 28 people.
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