Days of torrential rain bring widespread disruption to Tamil Nadu state.
At least 269 people have been killed as another bout of torrential rain brought disruption to the southern Indian state of Tamil Nadu, including India’s fourth largest city, Chennai.
October to December is the wet season across the region, as the northeasterly monsoon is a far more potent force here than its summer, southwesterly, counterpart.
An astonishing 741mm of rain fell during that month – more than twice the monthly average.
The latest bout is the result of an area of low pressure in the Bay of Bengal. It dropped a remarkable 374mm of rain on Chennai on Tuesday. This compares with an average for the entire month of December of 140mm.
India’s fourth most populous city saw only slight rains on Thursday but water levels had not receded since a day earlier, when a massive release of water from a brimming reservoir swamped low-lying areas of the city.
The flooding has forced more than 200,000 people to abandon their homes.
Chennai is home to several major car manufacturers, and many of the factories have been forced to close as workers have been unable to get to work.
Road, rail and air transport have all been affected; the international airport has experienced more than a score of flight cancellations, including those between Chennai and Mumbai.
The rain is expected to continue in the coming days. The India Meteorological Department has warned of another 1,000mm of rain in the next 48 hours.