Yamuna flows above danger mark in Delhi, key bridge shut

“The situation is severe but we have made all necessary arrangements,” Dikshit told reporters.       Following release of 7.44 lakh cusecs of water by Haryana, the water level in the Yamuna reached 206.30 metres -- 1.47 metres above the danger mark -- Tuesday morning.

According to the Central Water Commission, the water level is expected to touch 207 metres, 2.17 metres above the danger mark, by Wednesday.  "The water level crossed 206 metres mark Tuesday morning, forcing us to shut the Old Railway Bridge," said an official at the Flood Control room in Kashmere Gate.

The closure of the bridge, the oldest over the Yamuna here, forced the diversion of traffic onto National Highway No.24, that links Delhi with Uttar Pradesh, choking many arterial roads in parts of the capital.  Train services across the Old Railway Bridge -- a double-decker road-cum-rail iron girder structure built in 1868 -- were suspended and over two dozen trains from and to the Old Delhi Railway Station were diverted to other routes, a railway official said.

The release of water from the Hathnikund barrage upstream in Haryana has swollen the Yamuna and it is flowing much above the danger level of 204.83 metres at Delhi.
Several low-lying areas in parts of the capital are flooded by the rising water level in Yamuna and people from areas like New Usmanpur, Sarita Vihar, Kalindi Kunj, Jamia Nagar and Wazirabad have been shifted to temporary shelter camps.

Delhi Irrigation and Flood Control Minister Raj Kumar Chauhan Monday said it was for the first time in the last 100 years that so much water had been released in the Yamuna.  "The government has made adequate arrangements to handle the situation. About 75 boats, 68 divers and boatmen and a team of the National Disaster Relief Force have been deployed along the riverside," he said.

He appealed to the people staying in the low-lying areas to take shelter on higher ground.

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