Water levels Receding but 35 Villages in Sangli & Kolhapur still out of Bounds
An Armyman carries a baby to a safer place in Sangli on Sunday; several women grateful to the Navy for evacuating them tie rakhis on the hands of personnel ahead of Rakshabandhan.
Sangli/Kolhapur: As many as 35 villages in Sangli and Kolhapur still remained cut off on Sunday despite the rains easing up and the water levels receding at many places in both districts. The opening up of the national highway 4 (NH4) at the Panchaganga bridge in Kolhapur for vehicles carrying essential supplies was put off to Monday. The Southern Command of the Indian Army on Sunday stepped up the rescue operations in the two districts by deploying 12 more teams of the Navy in flood-affected areas. These rescue teams are equipped with rubber inflatable boats and other paraphernalia. Since the water level in Sangli and Kolhapur cities have gone down by five to six feet in the last 24 hours, the teams are mainly focusing on supplying relief material to the stranded people. The Sangli district administration said that 17 villages in three tehsils Walwa, Miraj and Palus are still inaccessible by road as they are submerged under water. “Rescue agencies have been supplying relief material to these places in boats for the last five days. We are evacuating stranded villagers to relief camps. A team of veterinary doctors has been roped in to vaccinate cattle in the flood-affected areas,” assistant collector Ashish Yerekar told TOI over the phone.
The flooding in Kolhapur city, with the water levels having reached as high as 10-12 feet just a few days ago, reduced drastically to up to 1 or 2 feet on Sunday. However, 18 villages in four talukas in the district Hatkanangale, Shirol, Gaganbawda and Karveer are totally cut off with no relief from the administration in sight. The authorities said rescue teams will attempt to reach these villages on Monday. In a major relief to both Kolhapur and Sangli, the water discharge from the Koyna dam in Satara district was controlled while the release from the Almatti dam in Karnataka was increased up to 5.40 lakh cusecs on Sunday. The Kolhapur Municipal Corporation (KMC) is planning to resume the water supply to half of the city by Thursday. In Kolhapur city, waters are receding in several areas such as Sita Colony, Siddharthnagar, Patankar high school, at the collectorate, Jadhavwadi and Kasba Bawda. However, Venus chowk continued to be under 10ftdeep water. Few roads in the city are open for traffic. The road from Kasba Bawda to the city was opened after the waters completely receded at Line Bazaar. In a major relief, a bridge from Kasba Bawda to Shiye and Shiroli was opened on Sunday. However, a major road along Kasba Bawda leading up to the district court complex is still under water. The water level of the Panchaganga river at the Rajaram barrage reduced considerably within 12 hours on Sunday.
With 33 more Deaths, Flood Toll Across Country 174 in 5 Days
Home minister Amit Shah takes an aerial view of flood-affected areas in Karnataka on Sunday.
New Delhi: Even as rain gods restrained their fury in several states across the country and flood waters receded on Sunday, reports of deaths kept trickling in, taking the total toll to 174 in a span of five days. As many as 33 deaths were reported on Sunday with Kerala accounting for 15, Gujarat 11 and Karnataka seven. Maharashtra reported no death in last 24 hours and its toll since August 7 stood at 30. All the 11 deaths in Gujarat were reported from the Saurashtra region, taking the state death count to 33 in just two days. Bodies of all the 11 six labourers who were swept away in the strong currents of Falku river on Saturday evening and five fishermen who had drowned after their boats capsized in the rough Arabian Sea off Porbandar coast on Sunday – have been recovered. Twenty other fishermen, who had ventured into the sea along with those now dead, are missing.
In Kerala, death toll mounted to 72 with the recovery of 15 more bodies on Sunday. With rain losing intensity, search and rescue operations gathered pace but rescuers expressed fear about the 63 people, who were still missing in Wayanad and Malappuram districts, where two massive landslides had flattened hillslopes. Meanwhile, flight operations from the international airport in Kochi resumed on Sunday afternoon, two days after it was shut due to inundation of the runway area. As many as 2.47 lakh people have been shifted to 1,639 relief camps across the state. Wayanad MP Rahul Gandhi visited the camps at Kavalappara. He would be visiting the camps in Kozhikode and Wayanad on Monday. Union home minister Amit Shah, accompanied by CM BS Yediyurappa, conducted an aerial survey of flood-affected areas in Belagavi, the Almatti dam in Vijayapura and Koyna dam in Maharashtra.
Dam Waters Flood Hampi, Srirangapatna; Toll Tits 41
The Unesco world heritage site in Hampi, on the banks of the Tungabhadra river in Ballari district, was inundated after over 3 lakh cusecs of water was released from reservoir on Sunday.
Bengaluru: After a week of battering, rain took a break across Karnataka on Sunday, allowing relief and rescue workers to search for the missing and move more people to safety. Flood waters were receding in many places in North Karnataka, barring near reservoirs. Several monuments in the heritage site of Hampi were submerged as Tungabhadra dam logged a record discharge of 3 lakh cusecs due to heavy inflow. Outflow from KRS dam left the historical town of Srirangapatna and the bird sanctuary at Ranganathittu, near Mysuru, under water. Union home minister Amit Shah, accompanied by CM BS Yediyurappa, conducted an aerial survey of affected areas in Belagavi, Almatti dam in Vijayapura and Koyna dam in Maharashtra. The CM put the loss at Rs 10,000 crore and urged the Centre to release Rs 3,000 crore immediately. The toll rose to 41. Four more people are feared to have been killed as they were hit by a pickup vehicle and flung off Kumudavati bridge in Choradi in Shivamogga district. The toll may increase as 14 people are missing across the state. Around 200 tourists, including a few foreigners, had to be moved from Virupapura Gadde on the banks of the Tungabhadra as hotels did not heed warnings and continued to welcome tourists. In good news, 70 residents of Alekhan Horatti of Chikkamagaluru district were rescued by NDRF personnel. The team also rescued a septuagenarian, Narayana Gowda, by carrying him for over 7km on a slippery road.
Heavy Rain continues to Lash Parts of Gujarat, Toll Rises to 31
The India Meteorological Department has said heavy rainfall is likely at isolated places in Saurashtra and Kutch in the next 24 hours.
Ahmedabad: As heavy showers continued to lash parts of Gujarat, the toll in rain-related incidents rose to 31 in the state, with 12 more deaths reported from Saurashtra region in last 24 hours, officials said on Sunday. Till Saturday, 19 deaths were reported in rain-related mishaps, including 16 in wall/building collapse incidents, as Saurashtra and central Gujarat experienced heavy rains. A police official on Sunday said five fishermen drowned after three boats capsized amid rough weather and storm in the Arabian sea off Porbandar coast in Saurashtra region of Gujarat. Around 20 other fishermen who ventured into the sea on three other boats were still missing, he said. Besides, six people were swept away in a strong water current in Falku river in Surendranagar district of Saurashtra region, another police official said. Some fishermen from Porbandar district and Veraval in neighbouring Gir Somnath district ventured into the sea on small boats on Friday morning. They were caught in the rough weather and storm in the sea on Friday evening before they could return, Porbandar superintendent of police Parthrajsinh Gohil said. “Three boats capsized off the state coast due to bad weather and five fishermen drowned. Their bodies have been recovered. The other fishermen on these boats swam to safety,” he said.
“A ship and aircraft of the Coast Guard are searching for 20 other missing fishermen who ventured into the sea on three other boats,” he said. In another incident, seven people from Vavdi village in Surendranagar were swept away in the strong current of Falku river when they were trying to cross a causeway on Saturday evening, an official at Dhrangadhra taluka police station said. “Six bodies have so far been recovered. One person is still missing,” he said. Several parts of central Gujarat and Saurashtra and Kutch regions have been receiving heavy rainfall since Friday. In the last 24 hours ending 8am on Sunday, Nakhatrana taluka in Kutch district received 321 mm rainfall, Tankara in Morbi district got 268 mm rain while Dhrangadhra taluka in Surendranagar recorded 209 mm downpour, according to data available at the state emergency operation centre said. Heavy rainfall is likely at isolated places in Saurashtra and Kutch regions in the next 24 hours, an official of the India Meteorological Department (IMD) here said. “Fishermen are advised not to venture into the sea as squally weather is likely to prevail along and off the Gujarat coast on Sunday and Monday due to active monsoon conditions,” he said. PTI
36 more Flood Deaths Reported from Gujarat, Kerala & Karnataka
BRAVE ACT: Pruthviraj Jadeja, a Gujarat constable, carries two children on his shoulder for more than 1.5km as he walks through waist-deep water in a village in Morbi district.
Gujarat: Even as rain gods restrained their fury in several states across the country and floodwaters receded on Sunday, reports of deaths kept trickling in, taking the toll to 177 in a span of five days. As many as 36 deaths were reported on Sunday with Kerala accounting for 15, Gujarat 14 and Karnataka seven. Fortunately, Maharashtra reported no death in last 24 hours and its toll since August 7 stood at 30. All the 14 deaths in Gujarat were reported from the Saurashtra region, taking the state’s death count to 36 in just two days. Twenty fishermen, who had ventured into the sea, are missing. In Kerala, death toll mounted to 72 with the recovery of 15 more bodies on Sunday. With rain losing intensity, search and rescue operations gathered pace but rescuers expressed fear about the 63 people who were still missing in Wayanad and Malappuram districts, where two massive landslides had flattened hill slopes. As many as 2.47 lakh people have been shifted to 1,639 relief camps across the state. Wayanad MP Rahul Gandhi visited the relief camps at Kavalappara and interacted with people. He would be visiting the camps in Kozhikode and Wayanad on Monday.
With Karnataka reporting seven more deaths, the state toll rose to 41. After a week of rain-battering, there was a break across Karnataka. Flood waters were receding in many places in North Karnataka, barring the vicinity of reservoirs, but several monuments in the heritage site of Hampi were engulfed in water. Around 200 tourists, including a few foreigners, had to be moved from Virupapura Gadde on the banks of the Tungabhadra as hotels nearby did not heed warnings and continued to welcome tourists. Hundreds of villages remained under water as all rivers, including Krishna, Malaprabha and Ghataprabha, are in spate. Union home minister Amit Shah, accompanied by CM BS Yediyurappa, conducted an aerial survey of flood-affected areas in Belagavi, the Almatti dam in Vijayapura and Koyna dam in Maharashtra. Yediyurappa said a loss of around Rs. 10,000 crores have been estimated and he has urged the Centre to release Rs. 3,000 crores to carry out immediate relief work.
Sloth Bear Mauls Security Guard to Death in Valparai
Coimbatore: A sloth bear mauled a 56-year-old private security guard to death at Iyerpadi Tea Estate in Valparai on Sunday morning. The deceased was identified as Subramani, who was working as a security guard at the estate manager’s house. “He was on his way home after work when the bear attacked him. He suffered injuries on his head and died on the spot,” a forest department official said. Workers of the estate, who found the body around 6.30am, had informed the forest department. A few protesters did not allow Valparai forest range officer Senthilkumar to send the body for postmortem. It was sent to the Valparai Government Hospital after revenue department officials spoke to the protesters.
Car Bomb Kills 3 UN Staff Outside Libya Shopping Mall
Benghazi: A bomb-laden vehicle exploded Saturday outside a shopping mall in Libya’s eastern city of Benghazi, killing at least three UN staff members, a spokesman for the UN secretary-general said. The attack came even as the country’s warring sides said they accepted a cease-fire proposed by the UN aimed at halting combat in the capital Tripoli for Eid celebrations. Health officials said the blast took place outside a mall in the Hawari neighborhood, where people were gathering for shopping a day before Eid al-Adha. The Benghazi municipal council said the attack targeted a convoy for the UN Support Mission in Libya. The site of the attack is close to offices of the mission in Libya. Two of the dead hailed from Libya and Fuji, and the blast wounded nine people, according to health officials who spoke on condition of anonymity. No group claimed responsibility for the attack.