Cy­clone trig­gers flood fear in Odisha, Andhra

AF­TER­MATH Rivers in both states are in full spate a day af­ter Cy­clone Titli hit their coasts

Hindustan Times (Amritsar) - - Htnation - De­babrata Mo­hanty and Gali Na­garaja let­ters@hin­dus­tan­times.com ■

BHUBANESWAR/VIJAYAWADA: Andhra Pradesh and Odisha stared at a pos­si­ble flood threat a day af­ter Cy­clone Titli struck their coasts, with rivers and streams in full spate in both states fol­low­ing heavy rain in sev­eral dis­tricts.

At least 12 peo­ple were killed across both states, of­fi­cials said, af­ter Cy­clone Titli made land­fall early on Thurs­day, dis­rupt­ing road and telecom­mu­ni­ca­tions net­works as well as power and wa­ter sup­ply.

Gan­jam dis­trict of Odisha was the worst af­fected while Srikaku­lam dis­trict in Andhra Pradesh was hit hard by the cy­clone that dumped heavy rain in coastal ar­eas.

Odisha’s spe­cial re­lief com­mis­sioner Bish­nu­pada Sethi said G Uday­giri of Kand­hamal dis­trict recorded the max­i­mum rain­fall of 351 mm un­der the im­pact of the cy­clonic storm that is now sta­tioned over Kand­hamal-An­gul dis­tricts. By Fri­day night, the sys­tem is ex­pected to grad­u­ally move north-east­wards to West Ben­gal.

Rail traf­fic was badly af­fected as a tree fell on the tracks be­tween Am­badala and Dahikhala in Odisha’s Raya­gada dis­trict. Three long-dis­tance trains --- Santra­gachi-Chen­nai Ex­press, Gand­hid­ham Ex­press and Tiru­pati-Bi­laspur Ex­press --- were halted at dif­fer­ent sta­tions in Raya­gada.

As many as 16 ru­ral wa­ter sup­ply schemes in Andhra Pradesh were dam­aged, af­fect­ing the sup­ply of drink­ing wa­ter to sev­eral vil­lages. Restora­tion work is ex­pected to be­gin on Fri­day.

Power sup­ply in­fra­struc­ture also suf­fered heavy dam­age, lead­ing to the dis­rup­tion of sup­ply in 4,319 vil­lages and six mu­nic­i­pal towns in Srikaku­lam dis­trict. The telecom­mu­ni­ca­tion net­work was dam­aged at 112 sites due to high-speed winds in the dis­trict.

The high-speed cy­clonic winds did not wreak much dam­age in Gan­jam dis­trict but the re­sul­tant rain led to flood­ing in Bhan­jana­gar block of the dis­trict.

Rivers Rushikulya and Vansad­hara have been flow­ing above the dan­ger level at three places in Gan­jam, Ga­jap­ati and Raya­gada since Thurs­day evening. In Bala­sore, river Jalaka con­tin­ued to flow six me­tres above the dan­ger level due to the in­ces­sant rain.

The wa­ter was flow­ing five­feet above Athar­nala bridge cut­ting com­mu­ni­ca­tion to as many as eight pan­chay­ats of Mo­hana block of Ga­jap­ati, which recorded 315mm of rain, the high­est in Odisha since Thurs­day.

The ris­ing wa­ter level of the Vam­sad­hara, which also passes through Andhra Pradesh, has turned the sit­u­a­tion grim in the south­ern state as well.

A third-level warn­ing was is­sued on Thurs­day at 5pm at Gotta Bar­rage with in­flows in the Vam­sad­hara recorded at 1,23,042 cusecs, a bul­letin of the Andhra Pradesh State Dis­as­ter Man­age­ment Author­ity (APSDMA) said.

A flood sit­u­a­tion pre­vailed in Kothuru, Heera and Jala­muru man­dals of Srikaku­lam down­stream. Low ly­ing ar­eas such as Palasa and Va­jrapu Kothuru re­mained wa­ter­logged with sea wa­ter. Heera­man­dalam in Srikaku­lam dis­trict re­ceived the high­est rain­fall of 153mm.

Srikaku­lam col­lec­tor K Dhanan­jaya Reddy told re­porters the dis­trict ad­min­is­tra­tion was pre­par­ing to evac­u­ate peo­ple from vul­ner­a­ble ar­eas and also fo­cus­ing on san­i­ta­tion and pub­lic health.

Andhra Pradesh CM Chan­drababu Naidu, camp­ing in Srikaku­lam, car­ried an aerial sur­vey on Fri­day of cy­clone-af­fected ar­eas. He an­nounced an ex-gra­tia pay­ment for the fam­i­lies of eight peo­ple, who died dur­ing the cy­clone on Thurs­day.

Prime Min­is­ter Naren­dra Modi called up Naidu and en­quired about the con­di­tions in the cy­clone-hit north coastal Andhra re­gion. The state govern­ment is ex­pected to seek cen­tral as­sis­tance.

Six fish­er­men were swept away at sea and two peo­ple died in Andhra Pradesh’s Sarigu­jjula man­dal of Srikaku­lam dis­trict when the cy­clone hit the coast. The first re­port of a ca­su­alty from Odisha came from Gan­jam dis­trict where a mi­nor girl died af­ter an up­rooted tree fell on her house, lead­ing to the col­lapse of a por­tion of its wall.

Of­fi­cials mon­i­tor­ing the sit­u­a­tion said Ra­jeswari Naik, a stu­dent of Class 8 in K Nua­gaon area of Chik­iti block, died in­stantly while her par­ents suf­fered in­juries. How­ever, spe­cial re­lief com­mis­sioner Bish­nu­pada Sethi said the re­port was be­ing ver­i­fied. In an­other in­ci­dent in Gan­jam, the body of a man who was swept away in Ga­jal­badi pan­chayat was re­cov­ered on Fri­day a few me­tres from his house.

Six peo­ple of a fam­ily went miss­ing on Thurs­day af­ter their house was swept away by the wa­ters of the Adangi river in Bhuta­pankal vil­lage. In two sep­a­rate in­ci­dents, two men were swept away in Naya­garh dis­trict.

PTI

■ A woman stands near the de­bris of her house that was dam­aged by Cy­clone Titli in Andhra Pradesh’s Srikaku­lam on Fri­day.

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