Toll climbs up to 42

The cup of misery for people of North Coastal Andhra continued to be full for the sixth day running on Sunday as the incessant rains took the death toll to 42 with five others going missing. The situation in Telangana has, however, improved as the rains have receded.

Srikakulam town and several places in Visakhapatnam district and Konaseema area bore the brunt of rain and floods on Sunday as many rivers and rivulets in the region were on spate.

Over 2 lakh people in Srikakulam town were affected as floodwaters of the Nagavali entered most of the residential areas as it recorded 30 cm rainfall on Sunday.

The South Central Railway has cancelled three express trains run from Secunderabad to Visakhapatnam – Godavari, Garib Rath and Falaknuma – as water overflowed the track and signalling system got damaged in the coastal areas.

Seven trains were forced to halt in East Godavari district for several hours for the same reason.

The preliminary estimates by the State government have put the loss in the heavy rains at Rs. 1,868 crore with Prakasam, Warangal, Guntur and Nalgonda districts suffering badly.

Standing crop on over 20 lakh acres was damaged in the downpour putting farmers who raised paddy, cotton, maize, chillies and horticulture crops to heavy loss.

Chief Minister N. Kiran Kumar Reddy has decided to go undertake an aerial survey of the flood-hits areas in Prakasam, Krishna and Guntur districts on Monday after holding a high-level review meeting with officials and a few Ministers on Sunday.

He will take stock of the relief and restoration work after the aerial survey.

According to Commissioner of Disaster Management T. Radha, 8 persons were killed in Guntur, 7 in Nalgonda, 6 in Prakasam, 4 in Mahabubnagar, 3 each in Hyderabad, Kurnool, Vizianagaram, Chittoor and Wes Godavari districts.

Besides, 2 persons each were missing in Visakhapatnam and Krishna and one in Karimnagar.

Chief Secretary P.K. Mohanty informed the Chief Minister that about 4,200 villages in 16 districts were affected by heavy rains and floods, over 96,500 people living in low-lying areas were evacuated to 225 relief camps set up by the government. In all, about 22,000 houses were damaged and 1,700 cattle were dead in rains.

Besides, 1,020 minor irrigation tanks were breached and over 5,100-km roads were damaged in the rains.

The Met Department has forecast heavy to very heavy rain at a few places in Srikakulam, Vizianagaram, Visakhapatnam, East Godavari and moderate to heavy rain at most places in other coastal and Telangana districts till Tuesday morning.