Three Andhra towns, 200 villages still under flood waters | india | Hindustan Times
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Three Andhra towns, 200 villages still under flood waters

The flood situation in Andhra Pradesh continued to be grim Sunday as three towns and over 200 villages in the worst hit districts remained under water.

india Updated: Oct 04, 2009 12:51 IST

The flood situation in Andhra Pradesh continued to be grim Sunday as three towns and over 200 villages in the worst hit districts remained under water.

Though the inflows into Krishna and Tungabhadra rivers have slightly reduced, this has not ended the misery of people in Kurnool and Mahbubnagar, the two worst affected districts due to unprecedented floods over the last three days.

Most parts of Nandyal town in Kurnool district were inundated due to the overflowing Kondu River. There is five to 10 feet water in the town as local authorities began efforts to rescue people trapped on rooftops.

The floods triggered by heavy rains under the influence of a deep depression in the Bay of Bengal inundated 400 villages and affected over 1.8 million people in five districts, rendering 400,000 people homeless and damaging thousands of houses. The floods also destroyed standing crops, civic infrastructure, electricity and telecom facilities and paralysed road and rail transport.

Without food and water for the last three days, hundreds of people remained trapped in floodwaters. In Kurnool town, a large number of people remained marooned for the third day. The authorities have so far evacuated over 100,000 people in the town and surrounding areas.

The town, about 250 km from here, was flooded due to the overflowing Tungabhadra and Hundri rivers and the backwaters of Srisailam dam across the Krishna river.

The floods also ravaged the temple town of Mantralayam in Kurnool district. Rescue workers found bodies lying at several places.

Officials said the floods have so far claimed 33 lives but unofficial reports put them at 50. Dinesh Kumar, commissioner (disaster management), said 15 people were killed in Kurnool district while 13 died in Mahbubnagar. The remaining deaths were reported from Nalgonda, Guntur and Krishna districts.

The exact death toll would be known only after the water recedes completely in the affected towns and villages.

The water level at the Srisailam dam continued to be 10 feet above its capacity of 885 feet. Chief Minister K. Rosaiah, who stayed at the secretariat for the second successive night to monitor the situation, told reporters Sunday that there was no threat to the dam.

"There is also no threat to Nagarjuna Sagar and Prakasam barrage," he said.

As massive inflows are reaching Prakasam barrage, authorities in Vijayawada city and low-lying villages in Krishna and Guntur districts went on high alert. The chief minister said people were being forcibly evacuated to save their lives.

He appealed to people in the two districts to cooperate with the authorities by moving to safer places. "This is required for the safety of the people and also for the safety of the dams," he said.

Authorities have evacuated 89,000 people in Krishna district while another 130,000 people need to be evacuated. In Guntur district, 40,000 people were shifted to relief camps while another 48,000 would be shifted Sunday.

Meanwhile, army, navy and air force personnel stepped up rescue and relief operations. Using the Hyderabad-Bangalore highway at Beechpally in Mahbubnagar as their air base, four Indian Air Force helicopters were dropping food and water sachets in the marooned areas. Authorities are also using 257 boats to rescue people.