More than 324 people have died in the southern Indian state of Kerala in the “worst flooding in nearly a century,” The Guardian reports. The death toll went from 84 to over 300 on Friday, and the damage has left 220,000 people homeless after nine days of heavy rains. “Around 100 people died in the last 36 hours alone,” a state official said. Many have reportedly died due to mudslides set off by the rain, and the casualty number is expected to rise over the next 24 hours as more rains are expected. Rescue workers and India’s armed forces have deployed ships and aircraft to aid the stranded. While heavy rains are common in Kerala during monsoon season, the region has received 37.5 percent more rainfall than usual this year. The excess rain has submerged 6,000 miles of roads, temporarily closed the region’s airport, and interrupted communications networks, making rescue operations difficult. India’s home ministry said more than 900 deaths have occurred in the country’s monsoon season so far. Kerala chief minister Pinarayi Vijayan said the crisis was “extremely grave.” “We’re witnessing something that has never happened before in the history of Kerala,” he said.
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