At least 17 people drowned in the night (local time) of Thursday, September 12, during the final day of Ganesh Chaturthi celebrations in Maharashtra state. Participants traditionally descend into bodies of water on the final day of the festival, but weeks of heavy rainfall and severe flooding across Maharashtra state made the event particularly dangerous this year. The drownings occurred despite a heavy police presence in major cities; 50,000 members of the police force were deployed in Mumbai alone. Several people remain missing and rescue operations are underway as of midday on Friday, September 13.
A heightened security presence and residual disruptions, including road closures and transportation delays, are expected throughout Maharashtra state in the coming hours and days.
Individuals in Maharashtra state are advised to monitor the situation, anticipate a heightened security presence and associated disruptions, and adhere to all instructions issued by local authorities.
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