The southwest monsoon on Saturday picked up strength in North India where many areas received moderate to heavy showers even as rains continued to pound Kerala and Gujarat throwing normal life out of gear.
Rain gods smiled on Punjab, Haryana, Rajasthan, Himachal Pradesh and some other places in the northern belt which had witnessed only patchy rainfall since the advent of the monsoon late June.
The monsoon remained vigorous in Kerala and Gujarat with incessant rains flooding low-lying areas, triggering landslips and extensively damaging standing crops.
Rain fury had claimed 28 lives so far in Kerala where landslides were reported from Kannur and Kozhikode districts hitting road traffic.
Heavy rains pelted Gujarat where 400 people were evacuated to safer places in Jamnagar district's Lalpur area as water level of major rivers in the state rose perilously.
Mud houses collapsed and shanties were washed away in flash floods in Jamnagar which received 532 mm of rains since last evening.
In the northern region where the monsoon had been subdued and erratic since its arrival, Punjab and Haryana were lashed by heavy rains today.
Rajasthan, where Ganganagar was the hottest at 40.6 degree Celsius, too received widespread rains as the weather remained pleasant in hill state Himachal Pradesh thanks to continuous rains.