Bhubaneswar: With the release of flood water from Hirakud dam by opening one gate for a few hours, water flow in river Mahanadi is raising. Therefore, Special Relief Commissioner (SRC) Bishnupada Sethi Wednesday alerted collectors of 11 districts to prepare for the impending flood in the Mahanadi system.
Due to heavy rainfall in the lower catchments of Mahanadi, about 9.5 to 10 lakh cusec of floodwater is likely to be discharged at Mundali in Cuttack between 6 am and 10 am Thursday. Sethi asked Bolangir, Boudh, Subarnapur, Nayagarh, Khordha, Cuttack, Angul, Puri, Jagatsinghpur, Kendrapara and Jajpur collectors to take necessary steps.
One gate of the Hirakud dam in Sambalpur was opened for a few hours following heavy rain in the upper catchment areas. The collectors have been instructed to immediately activate District Emergency Operation Centres and control rooms of different departments round the clock, he said.
“In view of a medium level flood situation downstream, we would not release the water as planned earlier. Symbolically, one gate will be opened for some hours and was closed,” Water Resources Secretary PK Jena said.
“Around 11 lakh cusec water flowed at Khairamal at 9 pm yesterday. Taking the calculation into consideration, we expect that 10.5 lakh cusec to 11 lakh cusec water will pass through the Mundali barrage in Cuttack late tonight. There is nothing much to worry as the river embankments are strong enough to accommodate this quantity of water. A medium flood is expected in the system,” the secretary said.
As per the Chief Minister’s directives, patrolling and monitoring of river embankments have been intensified. There is nothing much to worry, but people must stay alert about possible flood, he added.
Due to flood and water-logging, nearly 3 lakh people in seven districts have been affected and over 61, 334 have been evacuated and shifted to shelters. The SRC has opened 71 free kitchens in the flood-hit areas. The government has deployed 15 ODRAF and three NDRF teams in the affected areas.
In Bolangir district, rain has subsided since Tuesday night. Water level has receded. About 18,000 people have been evacuated and sheltered at 60 relief camps in the 14 affected blocks and 5 urban local bodies (ULBs). Till Wednesday evening, 14 villages with a population of 2000 have remained marooned.