Bhubaneswar: Heavy rainfall pounded across Odisha leading to swelling of rivers and dams, while the flood situation remained grim. Eight districts of Jagatsinghpur, Kendrapada, Keonjhar, Jajpur, Mayurbhanj, Khordha, Bhadrak and Balasore have been put on flood alert.
Yesterday, SRC Pradeep Jena had shared that a low to the medium-level flood was expected in Brahmani, Baitarani and Subarnarekha river system. While all the officials have been put on alert, precautionary measures have been taken to deal with the situation. Baitarani, Budhabalanga, Subarnarekha and Jalaka rivers were flowing above the danger level by 6 pm on Thursday, informed the Water Resources department.
Today, the Subarnarekha river was flowing above the danger level mark at Jamshola Ghat and Rajghat. Similarily, Budhabalanga in Balasore and Bansadhara in Gajapati district were also reported to be in spate after low pressure induced rainfall in Odisha.
After heavy rains in the upper catchment area, the Mahanadi river and its tributaries had swelled up. Today morning, a total of 24 sluice gates were opened at Hirakud Dam. There is a flood-like situation in low lying areas of Subarnapur after the opening of the gates. Mundaghat, Bijepur and other villages in Ulunda block have been cut off by floodwater. Additionally, communication between Birmaharajpur and Subarnapur has been disrupted.
Floodwater from Mahanadi enters several gram panchayats of Kujang block, Jagatsighpur. Haripur village was marooned while water-logging threw normal life out of gear in Saharadiha, Bhandua, Kathakuta, Gobardhanpur villages.
In Balasore district, Kansa Bansa river was also flowing above the danger mark. It was flowing at 7.66 metres while the danger level is marked at 7.5 metres. Several low-level areas near the river have been declared as high-risk areas and local administration has been put on alert. On Friday morning it was reported that there was about five-foot water flowing on the National Highway 16 and has hence cut-off 46 villages of two panchayats.
More than two lakh people belonging to 10 blocks of Jajpur district have been affected by the floods. Worst affected are from Jajpur, Bujharpur, Dasrathpur, Bari, Rasulpur, Korei, Dharmashala and Badachana blocks. Since last night, the water level at Baitarani has started to reduce. However, the same at Brahmani and Kharasrota is gradually increasing.
The respective district administrations have evacuated people from low-lying areas to safer places. They are also trying to provide essentials to the worst affected. ODRAF, NDRF and fire service personnel have been deployed for rescue operations in addition to relief work. The administration is conducting a damage assessment which will soon be submitted to State.
In rain, flood and wall collapse related incidents, four persons have died in Mayurbhanj district, two in Keonjhar and one each in Sundargarh, Jajpur and Nuapada districts.