Flood Alert Withdrawn

Following improvement in weather conditions, the administration Monday evening withdrew the “alarm” it had sounded in the wake of rise in the water level of Jhelum and its tributaries earlier in the day.

“We have withdrawn the alarm as the water level in Jhelum near Ram Munshibagh here has come down the 16 feet mark following improvement in the weather,” the chief engineer, Irrigation and Flood Control, Ahmad Muzaffar Lankar, told Kashmir Observer, adding the danger mark at the city’s main gauge was 18 feet while “alert is sounded when the water level crosses 16 feet.”

According to the Met office here, the city will have “partly cloudy” weather tomorrow while light to moderate rains or thunder showers “at a few places” have been forecast for rest of the valley during the next 24 hours. “The rainfall recorded at Gulmarg this morning was 39.2 mm compared to 11.6 mm in Pahalgam and 13.6 mm in the city,” a Met official told Kashmir Observer.

Earlier in the day, the rise in the water level of the river and its tributaries across the valley had kept the administration officials on tenterhooks. In wake of incessant rains and flash floods, an “alarm” had been sounded requiring all sector and beat officials and other field staff to immediately report at their respective locations for flood duty. People had been asked to stay away from high flowing rivers and streams and those living in temporary shelters to move to safer places.

The divisional commissioner, Dr Asgar Samoon, had reviewed the situation at a meeting attended by senior officials asking them to keep their men and machinery in full gear to face any eventuality. He also held a teleconference with officials directing them to be ready for any situation.

Official sources said flood committees had been setup in every district and respective deputy commissioners were personally overseeing their work. Sufficient number of boats has been kept ready in vulnerable areas of the city.

Incessant rains since Saturday night triggered flash floods in some areas. The downpour has resulted in significant fall in temperature prompting people to put on warmer dress.

Reports from south Kashmir suggested many roads were blocked and rice fields inundated. Water level in Jhelum near Sangam on was reported to have significantly gone up. Heavy gushing water flow was reported in Veshnav, Romshi and Rambiara nullahs in south Kashmir’s Pulwama, Shopian and Anantnag areas. Similarly, the water level in Madhumati and Arin nullah in Bandipora, Puhroo and Mawar nullahs in Handwara and Ferozpora nullah in Tangmarg has also gone up, leaving the adjoining localities vulnerable.

At Noorabad in Kulgam area, the house of Abdul Rashid Najar collapsed last night due to incessant rains. Luckily, the inmates had already vacated.

The Srinagar Municipal Corporation commissioner, Dr. G. N. Qasba, has assured the city people of every possible help to meet any exigency. “All arrangements have been put in place to meet any exigency and to drain out water from localities,” he said.

“Water logging was reported from some parts of Soura and Hamdnia Colony, Bemina, where dewatering pumps have been deployed for drainage.

He said 30 high power pump sets were on job while additional 20 were reserved for emergency.

People can contact us or the police control room in case of an emergency or trouble due to the water logging” he added. Observer News Service

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