WITH AJI-I dam on the verge of overflowing, teams of Rajkot Municipal Corporation (RMC) continued visiting low-laying areas along the banks of Aji river and warning them about possible flooding for the second day on Friday. As the water level in the dam touched 28 feet on Thursday, RMC sent its teams to areas like Jungleshwar, Ekta Colony, Ranmanthpara and other areas along the western bank of the river. The teams asked residents to move to safer places telling them the overflowing dam may cause flooding. The teams continued their sensistasation drive on Friday also even as the water level in the dam rose to 28.70 feet by 6:30 pm.
The dam, which is the largest source of drinking water for 15 lakh residents of Rajkot city, does not have floodgates and starts overflowing after water level crosses 29 feet. “At 6:30 pm, there was inflow of 559 cusec (cubic foot per second) water in the Aji-dam. If the inflow continues at the same level, the dam might overflow by Saturday morning,” flood control-room of Rajkot irrigation circle said.
But municipal commissioner Banchhanidhi Pani said the civic body had a plan of action in place should the dam overflow and water level in Aji river rise. “For the last two days, our teams have been going around low laying areas along the western bank of the river and warning them to move to safer places. As a result, some people have shifted to their relatives’ places. Alternatively, we have identified eight buildings of schools and community halls in these areas which would act as temporary relief centres. They have been kept open since Thursday and will remain open till the time situation warrants. If need be, we shall evacuate people,” Pani told The Indian Express.
The dam has live storage capacity of 933 million cubic feet and it had already received 889 million cubic feet by 7:20 am on Friday.