Chandigarh, July 12 (Calcutta Tube) Sirsa district in Haryana remained on the edge as overflowing water from the Ghaggar river inundated 14,000 acres of land in nearly a dozen villages Monday.
‘The district administration has taken all necessary steps to prevent flood water from entering the populated area of any village of Sirsa district. The affected villages include Farwai Kalan, Neza Dela, Mallewala, Panihari, Burjkarmgarh and Musahibwala,’ said Prahlad Singh Gillakhera, Haryana’s chief parliamentary secretary.
‘The water level in the Ghaggar is continuously increasing and currently 25,000 cusecs of water is flowing in it. High alert has been sounded in the nearby areas. This problem is because the river was breached near Jhanda Khurd village in Punjab yesterday (Sunday) morning.’
Haryana Chief Minister Bhupinder Singh Hooda is expected to visit the flood-affected areas of Sirsa and Fatehabad Tuesday to assess the situation.
Haryana’s Ambala, Kurukshetra, Kaithal and Fatehabad districts have beem inundated for last few days. However, the officials maintain that the situation was gradually improving.
‘The flood situation in the affected districts is improving. We have directed all deputy commissioners in the state to take all precautionary measures as heavy rain is expected at isolated places in Haryana till morning of July 14,’ said Naresh Gulati, Haryana financial commissioner and principal secretary (Disaster Management).
‘Rescue work is on and all major breaches in rivers and canals have been plugged. So far, 11 people have lost their lives in floods in Haryana,’ stated Gulati.
In the neighbouring Punjab, rescue work was on in flood-hit areas.
‘Due to breaches in Ghaggar river and heavy flow of water, many villages have submerged in Mansa (in Punjab). Hundreds of acres of agricultural land has been flooded. The threat of flood is still looming over nearby villages. We have requisitioned army for help,’ Mansa Deputy Commissioner Kumar Rahul told IANS.
‘The army is working along with the district administration. We hope that the breaches will be plugged at the earliest,’ he said.
Punjab irrigation officials said water was overflowing at alarming levels.
‘We are monitoring the flood situation very closely. In some parts, the 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.
Punjab Deputy Chief Minister Sukhbir Singh Badal Monday ordered the comprehensive survey of loss incurred in the affected districts.
‘More rains are expected in Patiala, Gurdaspur, Fatehgarh Sahib, Hoshiarpur, Ferozepur, Ludhiana and Amritsar. It could enhance the problem, as water in Ghaggar and Bhakra Main Line (BML) is already flowing above warning level,’ said a governement spokesperson Tuesday.
‘Water level in Bhakra dam was recorded at 1,553.98 feet, which is 18.84 feet above the last year’s level, whereas inflow in the dam was 40,788 cusecs against 36,986 cusecs last year. The level of Pong dam was 20.21 feet above last year’s level whereas inflow was recorded 12,253 cusecs against 6,009 cusecs of last year,’ the official said.
Hundreds of villages in Patiala, Ludhiana, Fathegarh Sahib, Mohali and Sangrur districts were affected in last week’s flooding.
Over 2.5 lakh acres of farm land were affected and lives of over 4 lakh people of 814 Punjab villages disturbed. A total of 1,967 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 1 lakh hectares has been destroyed,’ Patiala Deputy Commissioner Dipinder Singh said.
At least 33 people have lost their lives in Punjab and Haryana due to floods.