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Lightning strikes kill 10 as pre-monsoon rains lash Pakistan’s eastern Punjab province

ISLAMABAD (AP) — Lightning strikes across Pakistan’s eastern Punjab province killed at least 10 people, officials said Monday as heavy pre-monsoon rains lashed the region.

The strikes on Sunday mainly took place in the Sialkot and Sheikhupura districts of Punjab. Lightning strikes are frequent across Pakistan, especially in Punjab’s mountainous areas and plains.

The Pakistan Meteorological Department said more rains were expected this week, bringing some respite from the ongoing heatwave. The National Disaster Management Authority warned the ongoing rains could trigger flash flooding.

Every year, many areas of Pakistan struggle with the annual monsoons, drawing criticism for poor government planning. The season runs from July through September.

Last summer, floods triggered by rains killed 1,739 people across Pakistan. The deluge displaced about 8 million people and caused $30 billion in losses.

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