8.06 lakh cusecs flood discharge at Hathani Kund Barrage, an all time high in the recorded history of the river

The unprecedented heavy rains due to early monsoons have resulted in a major rise in Bhakra and Pong dams along the Punjab-Himachal Pradesh border, while Haryana witnessed an all time record flood discharge at the Hathani Kund Barrage along the Yamuna river.

Meanwhile, Haryana Chief Minister Bhupinder Singh Hooda, who aerially surveyed the areas along the Yamuna, announced an aid of Rs. 10 crore to help the neighbouring Uttarakhand in its relief operations in the areas affected by floods following cloud bursts and landslides.

Punjab Chief Minister Parkash Singh Badal, while assuring all assistance to his Uttarakhand counterpart, deputed MLA Daljeet Singh Cheema and Chief Secretary Rakesh Singh to monitor the relief work and evacuation of the pilgrims to Hemkunt Sahib. The State government has hired a private helicopter to airlift the pilgrims. A special team led by special secretary K.S. Pannu and Deputy Inspector General of police Khubi Ram, has already left for Dehradun to monitor the entire rescue operation.

Union Minister of State for External Affairs Preneet Kaur has urged Defence Minister A.K. Anthony to allow the larger helicopters of the Indian Air Force for relief and rescue. In response, Mr. Anthony has assured more assistance from the Armed forces, even as two dozen Air Force choppers are already engaged in the relief operations.

As the catchments of Sutlej and Beas rivers experienced about 293 per cent more rainfall, the water levels in Bhakra and Pong dams have risen considerably. According to the Bhakra Beas Management Board, water level in the Bhakra dam’s Gobind Sagar and the Pong dam reservoirs on Tuesday was 1,596 feet and 1,319 feet, which was 66 feet and 17 feet higher as compared to last year respectively. However, no alert was sounded as the levels were not close to the danger mark.

An official release said that Haryana witnessed 8.06 lakh cusecs flood discharge at Hathani Kund Barrage on the morning of June 17, which was an all time high in the recorded history of river Yamuna. Such a heavy discharge has never been observed in June. In Faridabad district, discharge in the Yamuna near Basantpur village, rose from 75,000 cusecs on June 18 to 2.50 lakh cusecs on June 19 morning. An alert has been sounded in the neighbouring areas, though the administration has increased its efforts to strengthen embankments. In Palwal district, the authorities have begun the evacuation of residents.

A spokesman of Haryana Irrigation department said that in Karnal and Panipat districts, a breach occurred in Dhanaura bandh near Makhala Makhali village, while residents of Chougama village made a deliberate cut to get relief from flood waters. Though no loss of life or property was reported, flood waters inundated 2500 acres of land, where Kharif crop sowing had just begun.

Rat holes continued to create problems along the Kunjpura embankment Similar breaches occurred near Sadarpur, Mundigarhi, Pathargarh and Goela villages.

In Sonepat district, breaches caused by rat holes in the embankment of the drain, near Hatwala village, could not be plugged till reports last came in, though loss of life or property damage was yet reportedThe breach in Yamuna river bandh near Khojkipur villages was managed immediately.