11 taking selfies on watch tower among 38 killed by lightning strikes in India

People make their way through a flooded street during monsoon rains Jammu, India.
People make their way through a flooded street during monsoon rains Jammu, India Credit: AP/ Channi Anand

People taking selfies in the rain at the top of a watchtower in the Indian city of Jaipur were among 11 who died after being hit by lightning, police have said.

It means that lightning strikes have killed at least 38 people across two Indian states over the last 24 hours, leaving many others injured.

Most of the deaths occurred in the western state of Rajasthan, including 11 at the 12th-century Amber Fort, a popular tourist attraction.It has been reported that 27 people were on the tower and the wall of the fort when the incident occurred, with some jumping to the ground.

Senior police officer Anand Srivastava confirmed that a further nine people were killed and nearly 20 others injured in separate lightning strikes, as Rajasthan state was hit by thunderstorms and monsoon rains.

A car moves through a flooded street during monsoon rains in Jammu, India Credit: AP/ Channi Anand

A government official said that 18 people were killed by lightning in Uttar Pradesh on Sunday, bringing the death toll to 38 across both states.

A senior police officer told the media that most of the victims at the fort's tower were young, with the state's chief minister announcing compensation for the families of those who died.

India’s prime minister, Narendra Modi, expressed his condolences to the families of those involved.

"Many people have lost their lives due to lightning in some areas of Rajasthan," he wrote.

Lightning strikes have killed 2,000 Indians on average since 2004 and are common during India's monsoon season, which runs from June to September.