Bhubaneswar: At least nine people were killed due to the heavy rain and floods in Odisha, a relief official said Tuesday.
The deaths were reported from the districts of Nabarangpur (1), Kalahandi (3), Kandhamal (2), Koraput (1) and Malkangiri (2) , according to Special Relief Commissioner (SRC) Bishnupada Sethi.
Sethi said Odisha has recorded an average rainfall of over 100 mm in the last 24 hours with Karlamunda block of Kalahandi district registering the maximum rainfall of 608 mm. While Bolangir has recorded the maximum 226.3 mm rainfall, followed by Boudh (169.7 mm), Kalahandi (160.4 mm), Sonepur (139.9 mm) and Kandhamal (125 mm). Two blocks in Kalahandi and Bolangir districts have recorded over 400 mm rainfall.
As many as 40 blocks in the state have registered between 100 mm and 200 mm rain. The SRC, however, maintained that all major rivers in the state were flowing below the danger level.
While fire service personnel have been deployed in the affected districts, seven Odisha Disaster Rapid Action Force (ODRAF) teams were pressed into service for rescue operation in Boudh, Kalahandi, Nabarangpur, Koraput, Malkangiri, Rayagada and Kandhamal districts.
Train services were affected in parts of western Odisha as water was flowing over the tracks in some places due to torrential rain in Boudh, Bolangir, Kalahandi, Kandhamal and Sonepur districts, the official said. With more rainfall likely to occur over the next three days due to formation of a low pressure area over Bay of Bengal, the district administrations have been asked to be prepared to deal with possible flood, he said.
In Boudh district, Deogaon, Kamaghat and Gambaripadar villages were marooned after water from Tel river and Khadanga river inundated low-lying areas. The road link between Rubaliguda and Kantamal was snapped with high water levels on a considerable stretch of NH-41.
The situation was grim in Bolangir district too following submergence of several bridges and roads, and gushing water from Khadanga river entering Dharuapada and Tilakamala villages under Gudbhela block.
In view of the inclement weather, schools have been closed Tuesday in Kalahandi, Nuapada, Bolangir and Bargarh districts, an official said.
Train services have been temporarily suspended on Sambalpur-Titlagarh section due to water-logging on the tracks at some places, an East Coast Railway (ECoR) spokesperson said. In view of the safety of passengers, movement of trains has been temporarily suspended on the route, following which several trains are presently stranded at different railway stations, he said.
Mentioning that District Collectors have been asked to remain prepared to deal with possible flood, the SRC said, the administrative machinery is prepared to meet any eventuality.
Field officials are prepared to evacuate people from vulnerable areas to safe shelters, he said adding arrangements have been made for providing adequate food, safe drinking water, lights, health and sanitation facilities at relief centres.
hief Minister Naveen Patnaik Tuesday announced seven days of gratuitous relief for flood-affected people in Bolangir, Kalahandi, Boudh, Sonepur and Kandhamal districts.
The government will distribute Rs 60 per adult and Rs 45 per child per day in the affected areas. As more than 10 lakh cusecs of water will flow into Mahanadi by August 15 morning, the CM directed District Collectors of Khurda, Puri, Cuttack, Jagatsinghpur, Nayagarh and Kendrapara to remain alert.
He also asked them to intensify river bank patrolling to ensure that floodwater does not breach the embankments.