Suryakant Jena

Bhubaneswar: The Special Relief Commissioner today informed that as many as nine people have so far lost their lives in rain and flood-related mishaps in the State. While two persons have died in Kalahandi district, Nabarangpur, Kandhamal, Malkangiri have recorded one deaths each either due to flash flood, snakebites or mudslides.

As per the latest update from the Revenue & Disaster management department, medium flood in Mahanadi & its distributaries is anticipated as about 11.5 lakh cusecs of floodwater is likely to be discharged at Mundali on August 15 due to heavy rainfall in the lower catchments of the river. Moreover, collectors of 13 districts have been put on alert.

In view of the widespread damages caused by heavy rain, Odisha CM Naveen Patnaik announced seven days gratuitous relief of Rs 60/adult and Rs 45/child per day for the flood-affected people of Kalahandi, Boudh, Kandhamal, Sonepur and Bolangir distircts.

Earlier, speaking at a presser, SRC Bishnupada Sethi said that in last 24 hours several parts of western and southwestern along with interior Odisha have experienced extremely heavy rainfall with as many as 5 districts recording more than 100 mm of average rainfall. Bolangir has recorded the highest 226.3 mm rainfall followed by Boudh 169.7 mm, Kalahandi 160.4 mm, Sonepur 139.6 mm and Kandhamal 125.3 mm of rainfall.

In terms of block wise rainfall, Karlamunda has recorded 608 mm of rainfall, the highest for any block this season. At least 40 blocks of five districts have received more than 200 mm of average rainfall during the time.

With the India Meteorological Department forecasting more rainfall in coming 24 hours, the SRC said that apart from warning for possible flood situation, ODRAF and Fire Services teams have been mobilized in the districts of Boudh, Kalahandi, Nabarangpur, Koraput, Malkangiri, Rayagada and Kandhamal.

While rivers in most districts are currently flowing below danger mark, the SRC further informed that hundreds of people have been evacuated to safer places from low lying areas in the affected districts.