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Rajendra Prasad Mohapatra

Even as the water level in several rivers has started rising following the low pressure induced heavy rains across Odisha, Chief Engineer of State Water Resource Department Dhiren Samal on Wednesday said that the State did not face any imminent flood threat.

Samal said the depression has weakened and it has stopped raining in the State including the upper catchment area since yesterday. While the water level in Baitarani river has breached the danger mark at Akhuapada and many other places, it will cease to have any major impact.

“Water level has receded in Bramhani and many other rivers. The situation is under control and water level has been stable in most of the rivers. Breach of embankment by flood water hasn’t been witnessed anywhere so far. However, the low lying areas have still been inundated due to stagnant rain waters and it will take some time to drain those out completely,” said Samal.

He said more gates at the Hirakud dam will be opened if the upper catchment areas experience more rainfall.

Meanwhile, the authorities of Hirakud Dam opened six more sluice gates of the reservoir today to release excess floodwater. With the opening of the six gates, water will now be discharged from the reservoir through 12 gates. 

At present, the water level of Hirakud stands at 628.10 ft against its storage capacity of 630 ft. While around 2.98 lakh cusecs of water is entering the dam, around 2.30 lakh cusecs of water is getting discharged from the dam per second.

However, the authorities of the dam assured that the situation is not alarming and it will not create any flood situation in the Mahanadi downstream areas.

“Hirakud water will take around 36 hours to reach the downstream rivers. There will be hardly any probability of flood-like situation in the downstream areas,” said Samal.

On the other hand, many parts of the State have been severely affected due to torrential rains.

Many villages under Thakurmunda block in Mayurbhanj district have been cut off from the mainland as Salandi river is in spate. As many as 1,500 people of 200 families have been marooned as the bamboo bridge they use has been washed away.

Several acres of paddy cultivation have been affected in Subarnapur. The farmlands have been inundated with waist deep water post heavy rains.

Streets of Gengutia village in Dhenkanal district have been flooded due to heavy downpour. Rain water also entered several houses in the area.

“We are unable to cook food for the last two days as our houses have been inundated with knee-deep water. We request the local administration to provide us cooked food and help us drain out the water from our houses and streets,” appealed Namrada Nayak, a villager.

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