Flood situation grim along the Krishna and the Bhima; thousands of people shifted
Communication links with several villages in Afzalpur and Jewargi taluks have been cut off Widespread destruction of crops in Bijapur district The Krishna and the Ghataprabha are in spate in Belgaum district
GULBARGA/BIJAPUR: Two persons have been washed away in floodwaters in Gulbarga and Bagalkot districts.
A 28-year-old pilgrim from Kalyan in Maharashtra was washed away in the Bhima at Sangam, the confluence of the Bhima and the Amarja, on the outskirts of Deval Ganghapur in Afzalpur taluk of Gulbarga district on Thursday.
According to reports received in Gulbarga on Friday, Dayanand Shankar Munde, who was part of a 50-member team from Maharashtra visiting the Sri Datta temple at Deval Gangapur, went for a dip despite being warned by the police and the people near the river not to enter the waters and was washed away.
Fishermen present on the scene tried to rescue him but in vain. His body is yet to be recovered.
Basappa Bhimappa Kumbar, 60, was washed away in the swollen Krishna at Shurpali village in Jamkhandi taluk of Bagalkot district on Friday.
Kumbar reportedly wanted to leave the marooned village and began to wade through water on the inundated approach road around 2 p.m. He was washed away in the strong current. Bagalkot Superintendent of Police Ramesh Harihar said efforts were on to recover the body. The flood situation in Gulbarga district, particularly in the villages on the banks of the Bhima, is worsening with every passing hour owing to increased release of water from the Ujani and Veerbhatkal reservoirs in Maharashtra. Communication links with several villages in Afzalpur and Jewargi taluks have been cut off.
The flood situation in Afzalpur taluk is serious with the water-level rising in many areas. More than 800 persons have been shifted to relief centres. In Hiriyal village, more than 87 people have been shifted to a relief centre. In Kudiganur, 37 people have been shifted to relief centres and a few more families are being shifted. In Udachan, 35 persons have been shifted.
Hire Mannur, Kudiganur, Shivur, Hiriyal, Ballundgi, Kallur, Havalga, Gulnur, Betagera, Kerakanalli, and Tellur villages have been flooded. Revenue and police officials are evacuating stranded pilgrims, sadhus and others from Sangam to safe places and relief centres with the help of motorboats. The situation in Jewargi taluk is also grim with the water-level rising alarmingly.
Six families have been shifted to relief centres as floodwaters entered Harwal village. The authorities are keeping a close watch on all villages on the banks of the Bhima. Motorboats and rafts have been kept ready for relief work.
The Bhima in Bijapur district on Friday swelled further causing widespread destruction of crops on either side of the river even as more residential areas were flooded forcing the people to move to safe places.
The level of the river rose to 14 metres near the Takli bridge on the State's border with Maharashtra. All the 47 villages along the Bhima in the district have been affected.
The approaches to at least 20 villages have been cut off, and boats are only means of transport.
Many farmhouses have been washed away.
The district administration is trying to get some more boats from Uttara Kannada district. They are likely to be brought only by Saturday.
The administration on Friday opened 17 gruel centres in addition to the existing three.
On Friday, 286 families were shifted to safe places. The number of people evacuated so far has crossed 3,000. The flood situation worsened along the Krishna following the increased inflow that rose to 3 lakh cusecs.
Rivers in spate
Belgaum Staff Correspondent reports:
The flood situation continues to be grim in Athani, Chikkodi, Raibag and Gokak taluks of Belgaum district as both the Krishna and the Ghataprabha continue to be in spate.
The situation worsened on Friday following increased discharge of water from Koyna and other reservoirs into the Krishna by Maharashtra.
On Friday, the cumulative inflow into the Krishna from Koyna and other reservoirs and barrages in Maharashtra was 2,95,684 cusecs as against 2,52,317 cusecs on Thursday.