Heavy rainfall wreaks havoc; one washed away in stream, eight rescued

Incessant rains have cut off access to villages across the West Godavari district.

With incessant rains pouring over the past week, many streams have been overflowing and have cut connections by road to villages in the Agency area in West Godavari district.

Heavy rainfall was recorded in many parts and the district received an average rainfall of 2,369.2mm till Tuesday morning. The highest rainfall of 140.4mm was recorded in Velerupadu mandal, followed by 125mm in Kukunur, 104 in Chintalapudi, 90.8 in T. Narsapuram, 85.2mm in Jeelugumilli, 80.8mm in Buttaigudem, 76.6mm in Koyyalagudem and 70.8mm in Jangareddugudem mandals.

More than 50mm rainfall was recorded in Iragavaram, Lingapalem, Gopalapuram, Mogaltur, Tallapudi, Deverapalli and other mandals in the district.

Woman drowned

A woman, Manisha Varma (22), of Hanmakonda in Telangana, was washed away in a stream in Buttaigudem mandal, and three others managed to escape from the flood. The body was retrieved on Tuesday, the police said.

All four persons came to have darshan in Gubbala Mangamma temple and were washed away in the stream while crossing it, said K.R. Puram Integrated Tribal Development Agency (ITDA) Project Officer O. Anand.

In the Agency area, Gundeti Vaagu, Pedda Vaagu, Jelleru Vaagu, Pala Vaagu, Konda Vaage and other streams were in spate for the last two years. Access by road to many tribal habitations has been cut off in Velerupadu, Kukunur, Buttaigudem, Jeelugumilli and other mandals, the officials said.

Mr. Anand said an alert has been sounded in the Agency area in wake of heavy rains and floods and sector officers have been allotted in vulnerable places.

Alert sounded

“At Bhadrachalam, the flow in Godavari is about 5.5 lakh cusecs, and is expected to rise by eight lakh cusecs in the next 48 hours. As there is an alert on heavy rains in the upstream area in Maharashtra and Telangana States, we requested the tribals to not venture into the river and cross the overflowing streams,” Mr. Anand said.

According to the Irrigation Department authorities, there was a discharge of 2.49 lakh cusecs from the Polavaram project at 6 a.m. on Tuesday. Water level at upstream of the cofferdam was 30.20 metres, said officials.

Polavaram Deputy Superintendent of Police (DSP) K. Latha Kumari said Velerupadu Superintendent (SI) Sadiq and a team of villagers rescued five people and 2,000 sheep from an overflowing rivulet.

“Pickets have been arranged in the tribal habitations where the streams were overflowing on roads. Village Revenue Officers (VROs), SIs, police constables and Mahila Police and other staff are monitoring the situation,” the DSP said.

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