1. Skip to content
  2. Skip to main menu
  3. Skip to more DW sites

India: Monsoon rains lash Mumbai, disrupt travel

July 8, 2024

India's financial capital has been inundated after intense rainfall overnight. Train services have been canceled, and schools have been closed.

A delivery person rides an electric scooter in a waterlogged subway after heavy rains in Mumbai, India, July 8, 2024
Flooding caused major disruption to the morning commute in the 12-million strong cityImage: Francis Mascarenhas/REUTERS

Following a deadly heatwave, intense monsoon storms have reached India, with heavy rain causing flooding across the subcontinent.

Rains hit India's financial capital Mumbai early on Monday morning, disrupting travel and forcing schools to close.

City officials said more than 300 mm (11.8 inches) of rain fell in just six hours, leaving rush hour commuters to wade through knee-deep water.

"There is heavy traffic on the roads and rail lines too have been affected," said Eknath Shinde, the chief minister of Maharashtra, the western state whose capital is Mumbai. He also told residents to stay indoors.

In India, record rainfall follows stifling heat

Train services were canceled on inundated tracks and airports had to suspend runway activities for more than an hour.

Schools and colleges were closed for the day as more heavy rain was forecast to hit the city of 12 million inhabitants. India's Meteorological Department (IMD) warned of "heavy to very heavy rainfall."

Death toll rises

While the monsoon rains can bring a respite from the intense summer heat, they also can lead to widespread destruction and cause multiple deaths.

Due to climate change, experts warn that the monsoon storms have become more intense and deadly.

At least 66 people have been killed since rains started elsewhere in India in mid-May, according to an official tally.

Villagers are using a boat to travel across a flooded area after heavy rainfall in Mayong, Morigaon District of Assam, India, on July 2, 2024
The northern state of Assam, home to the major Brahmaputre river, has also been affected by the intense rainsImage: Anuwar Hazarika/NurPhotoIMAGO

On Sunday, 10 people were killed in separate lightning strikes in the northern state of Bihar. Such strikes are a common part of monsoon storms. In 2022, almost 3,000 people were killed after being struck by lightning, according to the Indian government.

In the northeastern state of Assam, more than 2 million people were impacted by overflowing rivers. Six of the rare one-horned rhinos also drowned in their Kaziranga National Park home, authorities said on Sunday.

An Indian one-horn rhinoceros is taking shelter on dry land during floods at Kaziranga National Park in Nagaon District of Assam, India, on July 1, 2024
The one-horn rhinoceros, also known as the Indian rhino, is considered vulnerable as a speciesImage: Anuwar Hazarika/picture alliance

ab/lo (Reuters, AFP)