India: Monsoon fury - Death toll rises to 126

MUMBAI/HYDERABAD: Heavy rains on Sunday lashed Karnataka and Maharashtra, throwing life out of gear while the situation improved in worst-affected Andhra Pradesh and Kerala, even as the death toll in these states mounted to 126.

Mumbai and neighbouring areas bore the brunt of the monsoon fury that claimed five lives in the last 24 hours and the weather office said "heavy to very heavy" rains accompanied by gusty winds will continue to hit the metropolis.

Several flights from the city were delayed and rail traffic disrupted. A partially demolished building collapsed in the Grant Road area in south Mumbai last evening killing two persons, while three persons died in two incidents of wall collapse on Sunday.

Eleven crew members of a barge carrying sponge iron were reported missing after it sank at the Khanderi island in neighbouring Raigad district, police said.

In Andhra Pradesh, several coastal and low-lying villages were cut off as army personnel joined civil authorities in rescuing people from badly-affected Kurnool district where 85,000 people have been evacuated and kept in 51 relief camps.

The death toll in the torrential rains in the state has been put at 37 after 13 persons, who were presumed dead after being washed away in Kundu river near Kurnool, were found alive on Saturday.

Chief Minister Y S Rajasekhara Reddy undertook an aerial survey of the badly-hit Kurnool district in Rayalaseema region where several villages remained cut-off.