The flood situation in Surat has improved slightly since Wednesday night, following reduction in discharge of water from Ukai dam into river Tapti, but half of the city continues to remain submerged, officials said on Thursday.
Congress President Sonia Gandhi is on an aerial survey of the flood-affected areas of south Gujarat while the army and district administration have intensified relief and rescue operations. Rail and road traffic has also been restored.
Officials expect the outflow from the dam to further reduce by this evening.
"The situation is improving as the waters have started receding due to less release of water from Ukai dam and completion of high tide in the sea. We are engaged in rescue and relief operations," District Collector Vatsala Vasudevan told.
"The inflow of the Ukai dam is 5.94 lakh cusecs and the outflow is 6.50 lakh cusecs. As the water in the dam has crossed danger level of 345 ft, the release of water is higher than the inflow. But the administration is considering of bringing the outflow below six lakh cusecs, which is likely to ease the situation," a Flood Control Room source said.
However, control room officials said although "50 per cent of Surat is under water, it will recede as quickly as it had entered the city".
Control room officials said that although the water level of the Tapti river is gradually coming down, the Nehru bridge is still inundated with water.
Meanwhile, Ahmedabad railway officials said water has receded from tracks between Surat and Bharuch, making it possible for rail traffic to resume on the Ahmedabad-Mumbai route.
National Highway eight, which had been closed on Wednesday, has also reopened for traffic, officials said.