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Monday, September 21, 2020

Telangana rains: State machinery on high alert, helicopters on stand-by

The Hyderabad center of India Meteorological Department(IMD) has issued a forecast of thunderstorms accompanied by lightning “very likely to occur” at isolated places over Telangana till August 18.

Written by Rahul V Pisharody | Hyderabad | August 15, 2020 9:28:45 pm
Transport minister Puvvada Ajay Kumar visiting an affected Khammam district

Chief Minister K Chandrasekhar Rao Saturday took stock of the flood situation in Telangana after incessant rainfall over the last few days led to several tanks and canals overflowing, possibly inundating several low-lying areas.

Apart from sounding a high alert for officials concerned, opening control rooms, and directing ministers to stay put in their respective districts, a state-owned helicopter and a military chopper have been kept ready for rescuing people stranded during the floods.

A group of 12 farmers who were stranded in Kundanpally village in Jayashankar Bhupalpally districts was airlifted Saturday afternoon by an Indian Air Force helicopter. They had gone to their fields to pump out excess water and got stranded over there when floodwaters from nearby streams entered the fields.

Speaking to indianexpress.com, VN Bharath Reddy, director – Aviation, the government of Telangana, said that the state machinery is continuously in touch with the Indian Air Force and till the end of rains, a couple of helicopters are kept on standby for any search and rescue operations that may arise.

“Today we could save 12 lives in Bhupalpally district. Whenever we get a call from the public representatives and district Collectors and a confirmation from the office of Chief Secretary, we will get in touch with the IAF for evacuating the stranded,” he said, adding that the chief of operations at AFS Hakimpet is coordinating with the requirement.

Karimnagar: 27.4 cm rainfall recorded in 24-hours

Manakondur Mandal in Karimnagar district recorded the highest rainfall of 27.4 cm on Friday. Over a hundred Mandals located across districts of Warangal Urban, Warangal Rural, Karimnagar, Siddipet, Mulugu, Bhadradri Kothagudem, Jayashankar Bhupalpally, and Peddapalli, etc have recorded over 10cm rainfall.

On Saturday too, the rains have continued to lash across the state. Bejjur and Yelkapalle areas in Kumuram Bheem Asifabad district have recorded nearly 10 cm on Saturday, till evening. The rainfall data for the south-west monsoon season, between June 1 to data, shows that districts of Warangal Urban, Siddipet, Mahabubnagar, Jogulamba Gadwal, Nagarkurnool, Wanaparthy, and Narayanpet districts have received ‘Large Excess’ rainfall. During the period, the state has recorded an actual rainfall of 632.7 mm compared to normal rainfall of 485.9 mm, according to the Telangana State Development Planning Society(TSDPS) data on Saturday.

During the review meeting, the chief minister instructed officials to stay on high alert due to the heavy rains and flood situation in the State. He asked for the setting up of two control rooms in Hyderabad. He also wanted the ministers to stay put in their respective districts, and coordinate with the district collectors and police officials regularly, according to a statement from the CMO.

“The CM said since several tanks were filled to the brim, they may breach, roads may be inundated and low-lying areas may be flooded. He said the united Karimnagar and Warangal districts have recorded the highest rainfall and tanks in these districts are filled to their capacity. The CM said officials should be more alert in these two districts,” the statement read.

Further, Chief Secretary Somesh Kumar held a teleconference with all the district collectors and took stock of the arrangements put in place for handling any situation arising out of incessant rains over the past few days.

He directed the collectors to be on high alert as “there are indications that the rains are likely to continue for a few more days,” a statement from his office read.

Apart from asking officials to ensure no loss of lives or property, he cautioned them to be very vigilant in respect of tanks across the railway lines as well as those tanks which are vulnerable and likely to be breached. A state control room (040-23450624) is operationalized for flood relief operations. Kumar has urged the district collectors to set up around the clock control room in their districts to maintain a close watch.

The Hyderabad center of India Meteorological Department(IMD) has issued a forecast of thunderstorms accompanied by lightning “very likely to occur” at isolated places over Telangana till August 18. It has also predicted heavy rain “very likely to occur” at isolated places over the state during the same period.

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