Rain paralyses Gujarat, water levels rise in rivers

Rain paralyses Gujarat, water levels rise in rivers

Heavy rain pounded Gujarat on Wednesday, affecting normal life in all major cities in the state. At least three people were feared dead and 40,000 people evacuated between Tuesday night and Wednesday evening.

Unrelenting downpour had also affected rail transport in the Ahmedabad-Mumbai sector and five Mumbai-bound trains were cancelled. Traffic was reduced to a crawl in many major roads, with Bharuch-Surat highway being badly hit.

Water levels in the Tapi river were ebbing, offering some relief to Surat, though authorities in the city continued to maintain high alert with forecast of more rain in the next two days.

The South Gujarat region has been receiving heavy rain since September 21. Torrential rain lashed all the major cities in the State during the last 24 hours.
Rainwater entered many residential areas while the administration in several cities deployed rescue boats to evacuate people from marooned areas.

Almost all localities in Ahmedabad, Vadodara and Surat cities were water-logged with several under-passes and main cross roads closed for traffic.  Saurashtra and Kutch, usually drought-prone, also witnessed heavy rain on Wednesday, paralysing life there.  Schools and colleges in Ahmedabad, Vadodara, Bharuch and Surat remained closed and examinations scheduled for Wednesday indefinitely postponed. 

All major rivers in central and south Gujarat regions were swelling and the water levels were reported to be rising. The Meteorological Department predicted heavy to very heavy rain across the State right up to Sunday.

While the Ahmedabad Fire Brigade despatched half a dozen rescue teams to Vadodara and Bharuch, Vadodara District Collector Vinod Rao said the administration had asked the Army to help in rescue operations.Rao added, “We are still in the process of shifting more people to safe places and arrangements are being made for their accommodation."

Ahmedabad fire department officials said 50 per cent of the city had been water-logged.

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