Flood situation worsens in J&K

Flood situation worsens in J&K

As incessant rains continued to lash Jammu and Kashmir for fourth consecutive day on Friday, flood situation across the state has worsened with rivers and streams flowing above the danger mark.

Officials said at least four shepherds were washed away by flash floods near Kausarnag glacial lake in south Kashmir’s Shopian district on Friday.

They said, in a separate incident, at least 12 huts and several vehicles belonging to Army’s 34-Rashtriya Rifles and 18 Battalion BSF were washed away by flash floods in Boniyar area of Baramulla district. More than three residential houses and a hospital also suffered damage after a stream in the area breached near Bela Slamabad, 74 km from here, they added.

The state government has already sounded a flood alert as waters in river Jhelum crossed the danger mark, inundating several areas. Officials said Jhelum was flowing at 33 feet at Sangam in Anantnag district, 12 feet above the danger mark while in Srinagar it was flowing at 22.40 feet, 4.40 feet above danger mark.

Authorities also issued an advisory asking people living in flood-prone areas and on embankments of rivers and streams to shift to safer places to avert any untoward incidents.

Flood waters have breached embankments in many low-lying areas including Srinagar, forcing people to move to safer places.

In response to the state government’s request, the Ministry of Home Affairs has moved two teams of National Disaster Response Force (NDRF) to flood-affected areas of Jammu. Two NDRF teams from Bathinda were air-lifted to Srinagar on Friday and another two teams from Bathinda will be moved to Srinagar during the day. So far, 24 people have died while another 47 are feared dead.

Divisional Commissioner, Kashmir, Rohit Kansal said Army has been asked to assist in the relief and rescue operations in submerged areas of south Kashmir and Srinagar city. He added that six companies of NDRF will be arriving here to assist in the operations from Bhatinda in Punjab.

Reports said electric supply in most areas of south Kashmir districts was suspended because of uprooted electric poles and apprehensions of accidents due to short circuits in water logged villages and towns.

Drinking water facilities in more than 500 water supply schemes have also been disabled because of waterlogging and electricity failures across the valley, reports added.

The Jammu-Srinagar-Baramulla National Highway and several other major roads are under water forcing authorities to suspend all kinds of vehicular traffic on such roads.
Meanwhile, in Jammu, the Indian Air Force (IAF) rescued 14 people caught in flash-floods. A defence spokesperson said the rescue operation was launched by pressing MI-17 chopper into service in Akhnoor belt in the morning after the civilian authorities alerted the IAF.

About 250 people have been rescued by various teams of the Army and IAF from flash-floods in the Jammu region in the last two days.

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