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Sharmili Mallick

Malkangiri/Rayagada/Kalahandi: With decrease in rainfall activities, flood situation in south Odisha has begun to show gradual improvement.

The water level in several rivers in Malkangiri is receding while floodwater flowing over many low-lying roads and bridges in the district has also gone down.

Despite the improvement in situation, many areas of the district continue to remain cut off. In view of the situation, the administration has closed all the schools in the district today. As many as 4,819 people residing in several low-lying areas have been evacuated and shifted to safer places by the district authorities.

In Rayagada too, the amount of rainfall has considerably decreased leading the floodwater to recede in Bansadhara and Nagabali rivers. Water level is also coming down in vast swathes of land inundated by the floodwaters from Bansadhara River.

The Rayagada district administration also evacuated over 2,000 people and shifted them to temporary relief camps where they are being provided free cooked food.

The water level in Hati and other rivers in Kalahandi district is also receding. Several areas of Lanjigarh and Thuamul Rampur blocks were marooned after incessant rainfall yesterday forcing the administration to open five gates of Indravati reservoir.

Despite improvement in situation, train services have been hit on Daikalu-Ambadola section as rainwater washed away around 100 metres of railway track between Rayagada and Titlagarh Railway Stations on Wednesday resulting in cancellation, diversion and rescheduling of many trains on the route.

Due to incessant rains since the last couple of days, cultivation in around 50 acres of agricultural land was damaged after a landslide at Maranijodi Hill in Kashipur block of Rayagada district.

A temporary culvert near Bataguda on NH 59 in Baliguda block of Kandhamal district was washed away snapping communication from Kandhamal to Rayagada and Kalahandi districts.

A two-month-old infant died while his mother and three-year-old girl sustained criticla injuries after the wall of their house collapsed under the impact of heavy rain in Angul district. The mishap occurred when five members of a family were sleeping inside the house at Helei village under Kiakata panchayat in the wee hours today.

Meanwhile, the weather department has informed that the deep depression over North-West Bay of Bengal has weakened and now moved towards North-East Chhattisgarh. In view of that, the IMD has hoisted cautionary signal no 3 at all the ports of the State. The weather department has also issued heavy rainfall alert for Sundergarh, Bargarh, Nuapada, Bolangir, Kalahandi and Nabarangpur. Due to rough weather condition, fishermen have been barred from venturing into the deep sea.

Laxmikant Giri, Duty Officer of Bhubaneswar Regional Meteorological centre said that due to enhanced rainfall activities, the monsoon rainfall deficit in the State has lowered from 32 % to 16 %.

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