Low-lying villages in Chikkodi are flooded

Unabated rainfall and increased inflows into Krishna river from Maharashtra since yesterday have submerged seven bridges in Chikkodi taluk, Belgaum. Low-lying villages in Chikkodi taluk are flooded, disrupting normal life and vehicular movement in these areas.

According to Deputy Commissioner N. Jayaram here on Saturday, Kallol-Yadur, Sadalaga-Borgaon, Karadga-Bhoj, Bhojwadi-Kunnur, Sidnal-Akkol, Jatrat-Bhivadhi and Mallikwad-Dattawad bridges have been partially submerged, mainly due to the increased outflow at Rajapur barrage across the Krishna, situated at the Karnataka-Maharashtra border. Around 91,000 cusecs has been released from Dudhganga and Vedganga rivers in the upstream through the Rajapur barrage since morning, while 11,394 cusecs of water has been released from the Koyana dam near Satara, Maharashtra.

As a precautionary measure, the same quantity of water (91,000 cusecs) was released from Hipparagi barrage across Krishna river. While the inflow at the Almatti dam downstream was 93,437 cusecs, around 91,402 cusecs water was being released.

Ruling out the possibility of floods, Mr. Jayaram said village residents need not fear a flood-like situation. The rise in water levels was due to the outflow from dams and reservoirs in the upstream in Maharashtra, resulting in an inflow of 2 lakh cusecs or more. However, he added that precautionary measures have been taken and officials have been instructed to keep a constant vigil on water inflows into dams and barrages.

Also, 30 boats have been kept ready in Chikkodi and Athani taluks to shift village residents in the event of floods. A boat with a 60-person capacity was being procured and would be available in the next two days, he said.He appealed to individuals not to venture into the bridges and to use alternate roads for their safety.

So far, against the normal rainfall of 197.1 mm rainfall for the July, the district has received only 82.9mm rainfall until Saturday morning.

The water level at the Almatti dam on Saturday morning was 518.3 m, dangerously close to the maximum level of 519.6 m.Due to continuous rainfall in the catchment areas of Ghataprabha and Malaprabha rivers, the inflow at the Hidkal was at the rate of 13,426 cusecs (outflow 2,208 cusecs) and the inflow at Navilteerth dam was at the rate of 3,469 cusecs (outflow 1,224 cusecs). The storage in Koyana is stated to be 83.8 thousand million cubic feet (tmcft) against the maximum of 105 tmcft.

Officials said catchment areas of Krishna river and its tributaries in Maharashtra were receiving heavy rainfall. About 101 mm rainfall was recorded in Koyana in the last 24 hours. Rainfall during the last 24 hours in Mahabaleshwar was 170 mm, Dudhganga 180mm and Varna 83mm. Following are the figures for rainfall received in each taluk in Belgaum district during the last 24 hours: Belgaum 296 mm, Athani 81 mm, Chikkodi 205.5 mm, Bailhongal 118 mm, Gokak 68.3 mm, Hukkeri 185.7mm, Khanapur 506.8mm, Raibag 42.7mm, Ramdurg 28.7mm and Saundatti 7.8mm.