DISTRICT administrations on Monday shut schools in Varanasi and Allahabad for the next two days due to the floods, which have affected over 25 districts of the state. Thursday is already a holiday on the occasion of Janmashtami.
As many as 43 people have died in rain-related incidents in eastern UP, Bundelkhand and Terai regions in the last few days, officials said, adding that nearly eight lakh people have been affected. The NDRF and state’s Provincial Armed Constabulary have been pressed into service for rescue and relief operations.
Eight districts have reported an estimated loss of crop of over Rs 1,216 lakh. In over 10 districts, around 30,000 hectares of sown crops have been affected.
Both the Ganga and Yamuna have crossed the danger mark by more than a metre, and water levels in both the rivers are steadily rising by a rate of about three cm per hour, sources said. The level of the Ganga has breached the danger mark at Fafamau and Chatnag in Allahabad, Mirzapur, Varanasi and Ghazipur. The river has swollen to 60.30 metres in Ballia, the Central Water Commission said.
The water level of Yamuna has crossed the red mark at Chillaghat in Banda, Hamirpur and Naini in Allahabad. Ken and Betwa in Bundelkhand were reported also flowing above the danger mark. Ghaghra and Sharda in Terai, on the other hand, are touching the danger mark. Thousands of low-lying villages are under water.
“The water level of Yamuna and Ganga, which has increased after water was released from several dams, is not stable. The situation is likely to improve in the coming days, as no dams are releasing more water,” Allahabad ADM Ram Sahai Yadav said.
Chief Secretary Deepak Singhal on Monday held a meeting of officials in Lucknow to review the flood situation. He directed officials to visit affected areas and utilise Rs 23.84 crore released by the government for flood relief.