Rescue work on in Punjab, Haryana to plug breaches

Chandigarh, July 12 (Calcutta Tube) Rescue work was on in flood-hit areas of Punjab and Haryana Monday as the army joined efforts to plug breaches in the Ghaggar river that had inundated scores of villages the day before.

‘Due to breaches in Ghaggar river and heavy flow of water, various villages submerged in Mansa (in Punjab). Hundreds of acres of agricultural land has been inundated. The threat of flood is still looming over many nearby villages. We requisitioned army for help,’ Mansa Deputy Commissioner Kumar Rahul told IANS.

‘Army personnel are working along with the district administration. We hope that the breaches will be plugged in at the earliest,’ he said.

The army was also requisitioned in Haryana’s Fatehabad district where at least 30 villages were flooded due to breaches in the Ghaggar river.

‘Water is flowing at very fast speed and nearly 30 villages are affected due to this. We are providing packed food, water and medicines to the victims,’ said a Fatehabad district official.

Punjab irrigation officials said water was overflowing at alarming levels from rivers and canals.

‘We are monitoring the flood situation very closely. There is a mixed response. In some parts water level is receding but it is overflowing at alarming levels at other places. Right now, we cannot say that the situation is totally under control. Work is on to plug the fresh breaches,’ Punjab Chief Engineer (Irrigation) Amarjit Singh Dullat told IANS.

Hundreds of villages in Patiala, Ludhiana, Fathegarh Sahib, Mohali and Sangrur districts were affected in last week’s flooding.

About 2.5 lakh acres of farm land were affected and lives of over 3 lakh people of 763 Punjab villages disturbed. A total of 1,966 km roads have been damaged.

‘Water level has started receding in various parts of Patiala but at some places the situation is grim. There has been extensive damage to property. Standing crops on at least 1 lakh hectares have been destroyed in the district,’ Patiala Deputy Commissioner Dipinder Singh said.

The Haryana government also alerted Sirsa’s deputy commissioner where flood water inundated several acres of agriculture land. Ambala, Kurukshetra and Kaithal districts were badly affected.

At least 33 people have lost their lives in the floods.

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