by IANS |
Nagpur, Sep 23 (IANS) A woman was killed and hundreds of people were evacuated to safer places after a thunderous downpour since midnight of Friday-Saturday virtually submerged the state’s second capital Nagpur into a lake city, and the Indian Army was called for the rescue operations, officials said.
The torrential rains accompanied by thunder and lightning, poured over the city and surroundings, and many areas woke up to between one and four feet of waterlogging.
Thousands of citizens were left stranded in their homes or buildings, unable to step out as waters flooded the ground floors of housing complexes and in some areas power was switched off as a precaution, hitting even water supply.
A 70-year-old woman identified as Mirabai Pillay died in the flood waters and over 350 people in different parts were evacuated to safer locations.
Besides the Army, the SDRF, NDRF, Nagpur Police, fire brigade and other agencies were deployed in boats to help out the marooned people and take them to safer locations as intermittent rains continued to batter the city even on Saturday.
Some areas of the city which reported severe waterlogging included Shankar Nagar, Panchsheel Chowk, Sitabuldi, Ambazari, Kanchipura, Itwari, Lakadganj, Dharampeth, Mekosabaug, Sadar, Cotton Market and surroundings.
At least 50 girls stuck in a private hostel were rescued with ropes and shifted to a higher location, and some distressed families in buildings where two-three feet water seeped into their homes, were also moved out.
Hundreds of public and private vehicles all over the city were partly or fully submerged under water as drains, gutters, the Ambazari Lake and other water bodies flooded beyond the danger levels, with the waters gushing into the city.
As the rains assumed alarming proportions by 5 a.m., the city and district authorities ordered closure of all schools for the day to avoid inconveniencing the students.
The IMD has issued an alert for more heavy rains over the next 48 hours and urged people to exercise all precautions including moving out to safer spots with the help of the rescue agencies.
Chief Minister Eknath Shinde said in Mumbai that the government is constantly monitoring the flood situation in Nagpur while Deputy CM Devendra Fadnavis is likely to reach here this evening for a spot assessment of the scenario.
The IMD said that more than 100 mm rainfall was recorded in just four hours after midnight, which led to flooding the Nag River, and a local road bridge is reportedly washed away, stranding vehicular traffic in both directions