Haryana schools shut today; rains lash Chandigarh

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Met officials said the current spell of storms is not expected to be as intense as the ones that struck various parts of the country on May 4 and led to over 100 deaths in Uttar Pradesh and Rajasthan alone.

Following the forecast, the Haryana government has made a decision to shut all government and private schools on May 7- 8.

Haryana Education Minister Ram Bilas Sharma directed all the schools to remain closed on Monday and Tuesday in the wake of the thunderstorm and rain warning issued by the IMD earlier today.

Heavy rain and thunderstorms are likely in several states, including Kerala, in the next 48 hours, the union home ministry has said.

According to the warning of the meteorological department, dust storm, rainfall or thunderstorm may occur at areas like Bikaner, Alwar, Bharatpur, Dholpur, Karauli, Jhunjhunu, Swai Madhopur, Sikar, Sriganganagar and Jaisalmer districts.

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Authorities in Haryana and Punjab remained on alert following a storm advisory issued by the Meteorological department.

A spokesperson of the department said there is no need to panic and people should follow the precautions, pay special attention to children and senior citizens. Thunderstorm will be very likely at isolated places over Jammu and Kashmir, Uttarakhand, Himachal Pradesh, Punjab, Haryana, Chandigarh, Delhi and western Uttar Pradesh. On Tuesday, another spell of light rain or thundershowers accompanied with squall (wind speed exceeding 50kmph) is likely.

Last week, the Home Ministry informed that as many as 124 people lost their lives due to thunderstorms and lightning in five states.

The Met office has predicted thunderstorms, accompanied by strong winds and rain, in Haryana and Punjab from Monday to Wednesday.