Situation grim in Konaseema; Kiran asks District Collectors to get cracking

Four Army helicopters made sorties throughout the day on Sunday airdropping food and water packets for people in hundreds of marooned villages in Khammam, East Godavari and West Godavari districts, as the government stepped up relief work amidst complaints against non-response from officials.

One chopper flew over Konaseema, the estuary of the Godavari, where nearly 100 island habitations remained cut off for the second consecutive day. People in some of these ‘lanka’ villages had to go without food and drinking water and power supply.

Relief camps

Thirty more relief camps were opened in addition to the existing 70 even as 10 more units of the National Disaster Response Force were pressed into service, each equipped with boats. A fresh low pressure system, aided by an upper circulation trough extending up to Tamil Nadu, has been reported but the State did not receive heavy rains during the day.

There was some respite as the Godavari receded throughout its stretch in North Telangana and was flowing at 55 ft mark at Bhadrachalam in the evening, though water-logging continued in some areas. The level is expected to drop further on Monday. The situation, however, remained grim in Konaseema where water encircled more island villages when the outflow from the Dowleswaram anicut reached a whopping 18 lakh cusecs.

As the government machinery could not reach many of these villages, locals organised country boats to transport food and water to these villages.

The Krishna delta is expected to get some relief as 80,000 cusecs of water released from Almatti flowed into the Jurala project. Water was released into both canals of the project and all the six units of its powerhouse pressed into service. As Jurala’s gates are expected to open once the reservoir was full, the Srisailam project will receive inflows soon.

Chief Minister N. Kiran Kumar Reddy, who reviewed the situation with Chief Secretary P. K. Mohanty and other senior officials, asked the Collectors of Adilabad, Nizamabad, Warangal, Khammam, East Godavari and West Godavari districts not to give scope for complacency as the spell of rains did not end yet.

The Collectors were asked to undertake relief work on war-footing.

Mr. Reddy noted that the loss of life and property was at a minimum due to alert sounded to the districts and precautionary steps taken.