Telangana’s Godavari region is seeing massive floods owing
to a cloudburst over the area. Amid the crisis, the state’s chief minister, K
Chandrasekhar Rao, said cloudbursts are suspected to be a “conspiracy planned
by other countries.” The comment was made when the chief minister was touring
flood-hit Bhadrachalam.

“There is this new phenomenon called cloudburst. People say
there is some conspiracy, we don’t know how far that is true, that people from
other countries are deliberately doing cloudburst in our country at certain
locations,” the Telangana CM told reporters.

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“In the past they did it near Kashmir, at Ladakh-Leh, then
in Uttarakhand and now we are getting some reports that they are doing it the
Godavari region.”

The chief minister made the comment in the presence of
Telangana chief secretary Somesh Kumar.

Several areas in Telangana, especially around the temple
town of Bhadrachalam, have been inundated on account of very heavy rainfall.

Also Read | ‘Gloomy’ information suggests ‘foreign hand’ behind cloudburst: KCR

Water levels in Telangana’s inundate regions went up to over
70 feet and have now come down to around 60 feet. This is way above the third
and final flood warning mark of 53 feet.

What is a cloudburst?

A cloudburst is usually understood as extreme rainfall over
a short period of time resulting in floods. The weather office defines it as
unexpected precipitation exceeding 100 mm (or 10 cm) per over a geographical
region of approximately 20 to 30 square kilometres.

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Cloudbursts happen when air rich in moisture travels up a mountainous
region forming a vertical column of clouds known as cumulonimbus clouds. These
clouds cause rain, thunder and lightning.

Cloudbursts are different from regular rainfall because of
they cause very heavy and sudden rainfall. The difference is also in scale.
Rains above 100 millimetres are usually regarded as cloudbursts.