Srinagar- The weather department on Saturday predicted more rainfall in Jammu and Kashmir, even as the heavy downpour and cloudbursts inundated many low lying areas, triggering landslides and shooting stones along the strategic Srinagar-Jammu highway leaving it blocked for vehicular traffic.
According to reports, heavy spells of rainfall continued across the Union Territory on Saturday as well, causing water logging several low lying areas, including Srinagar’s civil lines areas.
Reports said that flash floods due to cloudburst created panic among the villagers in Damhal Hanjipora area in South Kashmir’s Kulgam district.
An official said that there has been a sudden down flow of water in many areas of Damhal Hanjipora due to cloudburst in upper reaches while no loss of human life has been reported so far.
“Water gushed into residential houses, apple orchards, caused damage to the boundary walls of a Higher Secondary and Middle School in Khurbatpora while inundating the roads as well,” he said.
He said the affected areas include Tangmarg, Korel, Chogalpora, Kurbatpora, Chachmulla and Jaibal area of Damhal Hanjipora.
“Police under supervision of SDPO, Damhal Hanjipora and officials of district administration Kulgam immediately rushed to the spot and evacuated affected families to a safer place,” official said, adding that Deputy Commissioner of the district was in constant touch with the ground staff.
Meanwhile, no fatality or injuries to anyone have been reported from the area till the report was filed.
Reports of flash floods were also received from Lolab area in North Kashmir’s Kupwara district.
Reports said that villages including Gundmachar, Khurhama and Shalagund witnessed damage to agricultural crops and orchards due to flash floods. Several roads have also suffered damage.
According to an official, a cloudburst around the Kota Nullah in Doda district early this morning washed away a stretch of the Thaleela-Chirala link road and created a flood-like situation.
“The cloud burst coupled with heavy rain resulted in mudslides and a flood-like situation in Kota Nullah. However no loss of life or injury was reported. Men and machinery are being deployed to clear debris from the road and restore it at the earliest,” Sub Divisional Magistrate, Thathri, Athar Amin Zargar said.
He said the Doda-Kishtwar stretch of highway which also got closed between Shiva Pull to Thathri Petrol Pump has been restored for two way traffic.
Torrential rains continued in most parts of Doda and Kishtwar districts for the third day on Saturday, resulting in the increase in water level in the Chenab and its tributaries Neeru and Kalnai.
The authorities have advised people to remain cautious and stay away from rivers, streams, and other vulnerable spots.
Landslides Hit Banihal Highway
A fresh batch of over 3,000 Amarnath pilgrims left a base camp here for Kashmir on Saturday but their convoy was briefly stopped in Ramban following landslides at two places along the Jammu-Srinagar highway, officials said.
Landslides due to rains were reported from Mehar and Dalwas areas along the 270-km highway but after removal of debris traffic movement was restored, officials said.
The 20th batch of 3,472 pilgrims left the Bhagwati Nagar base camp in Jammu in 132 vehicles in the early hours of Saturday but the convoy was stopped at Chanderkote due to the closure of the highway, they said.
The pilgrims were later allowed to move towards their destinations in the Kashmir Valley to join the yatra, the officials said, adding they reached Banihal around noon.
Of them, 2,515 pilgrims are listed to undertake the yatra to the Amarnath cave shrine in the south Kashmir Himalayas from Pahalgam in Anantnag district and 957 by the Baltal route in Ganderbal district, the officials said.
Shooting Stone Kills Man In Ramban
A 55-year-old man was killed when he was hit by a rolling stone from a hillock amid heavy rains in Ramban district of Jammu and Kashmir, officials said.
Abdul Rashid Bhat was on his way to Chakki in Pogal Paristan area when he was fatally hit by the shooting stones, Tehsildar Nasir Javed said.
He said Pogal Paristan witnessed heavy rains, cloudburst and flash floods in the morning, also damaging a residential house at Alinbass-A, Chanbas, while a portion of Ukhral-Senabathi road was damaged.
A bridge abutment near Magarkote, Sujmatrna was swept away in the flash floods, leaving several villages including Khowra, Dragali, Dardahi and Ahma without connectivity, the official said.
97 Families Shifted In Akhnoor
At least 97 families have been shifted to safer locations after water from Chenab river inundated Garkhal village in Akhnoor sub-division of Jammu district on Saturday.
Quoting an official, news agency KNO reported that a massive rescue operation was launched in the village after Chenab river breached the protection wall today.
He said that a few days ago 43 families were shifted, however, due to heavy rainfall since morning the situation deteriorated further as Chenab river breached protection wall and inundated the village.
Sub Divisional Police Officer Akhnoor, Mohan Lal Sharma said 97 families have been shifted to safer places and temporary shelters have also been established for them.
He said that situation may escalate further in the village if more water flows in from Chenab river due to heavy rainfall.
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