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Water enters Punjab town after canal breach

Talwandi Sabo (Punjab), Feb 18 (IANS) Water entered several parts of this Sikh religious town Thursday following a breach in an irrigation canal, affecting normal life and forcing the authorities to initiate relief measures.

The town, located 30 km from Bathinda in south Punjab, is known for the Takht Damdama Sahib, one of the five high seats of Sikh religion and history. Water entered the area and roads around the Sikh shrine too.

Officials of the Bathinda district administration said no casualties or loss of property had been reported so far though water had entered many areas of the town.

The breach in the canal occurred due to the sinking of earth at several places. The canal embankment gave away, leading to 1-2 feet of water in different places.

Nearly a dozen vehicles, including trucks, buses, tractor-trolleys and other private cars, got stuck at various places as the earth sank under them. Some roads in the town also sank.

‘We are trying to ensure that all people are safe. There have been no casualties so far,’ a police official told IANS.

Irrigation department officials blamed the state’s sewerage board for the sinking of the earth that led to the breach in the canal.

‘The sewerage board people did not lay the underground sewerage pipes properly and neither was the earth filled properly, leading to this situation,’ an engineer of the canals department said Thursday.

-Indo-Asian News Service

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