Deadly Lightning Strikes in India

At least 79 people were killed.

Lightning illuminates the sky over Mumbai. (Arko Datta / AP)

Lightning strikes that accompanied heavy monsoon rains have killed at least 79 people in multiple Indian states, officials said Wednesday.

The tolls vary. The BBC reports that 53 people were killed in the state of Bihar, 10 in Jharkhand, and 16 in Madhya Pradesh, while the India Today said 56 people were killed in Bihar and 42 in Uttar Pradesh state. Other news organizations had higher tolls. Most of the dead were agricultural laborers.

The numbers are not unusual: Indian government statistics note that at least 2,000 people die each year from lightning strikes.