Heavy rains leave 17 dead in northern India

DEHRADUN , India (AFP) - A landslide and floods triggered by extremely heavy rainfall killed 17 people in northern India on Friday, authorities said.

Another six people were left with injuries in the small remote Himalayan state of Uttarakhand by the downpours.

Fourteen people were killed when their houses were buried by a tide of mud and trees, emergency official Piyush Rautela told AFP. "The bodies have been recovered," he said.

Three other people lost their lives in separate incidents as a result of the extreme weather, he added.

While India's annual rains are a lifeline for the country's farm sector, flooding, landslides and building collapses are frequent during the monsoon season, which sweeps India from June to September.

Last year, thousands of people were killed in the same state when unprecedented rainfall wreaked havoc across the region, causing rivers to overflow and triggering massive landslides.

More heavy rains are forecast for the region during the weekend, prompting authorities to issue a bad weather alert.

Earlier this month, at least 151 people were killed in western India by a massive landslide caused by monsoon rains.

Neighbouring Nepal suffered its worst landslide in more than a decade this month in which 156 people were presumed killed.