Vikash Sharma

Bhubaneswar: A day after opening one of the gates as a customary measure, the authorities of Hirakud Dam today opened as many as 20 sluice gates to release floodwater entering the reservoir. The decision to open 20 gates was taken keeping in view the heavy rainfall in the upper catchment areas of the Mahanadi River basin.

“So far we have taken a decision to open 16 gates as of now to release excess floodwater. If the inflow is more from upper catchment areas, we can open more gates,” said PK Jena, Secretary of Water Resources Department.

At present, the water level of Hirakud stands at 622 ft against its storage capacity of 630 ft.  Around 1,98,762 cusecs of water is entering the dam against an outflow of 2,68,663 cusecs per second.

Jena further informed that adequate measures are being taken to ensure that the flood situation is contained at the Mahanadi downstream.

“To ensure that there is no flood situation and to reduce the net impact at Munduli, we have decided to see that there is flow of nearly 5 lakh cusecs of water at Mundali. The gate operation of Hirakud will also be restricted accordingly so that the water level of the reservoir is kept between 619 and 620ft by August 21,” Jena added.