The main local source of drinking water for Rajkot city, Aji-I dam, overflowed on Monday morning as the city received eight inches or about 200 millimetres of rain overnight in the eight hours since 12 am on Monday.
Meanwhile, water was being discharged from 19 other dams after heavy rain in several parts of Saurashtra and Kutch regions.
As the Aji-I dam on the city’s eastern outskirts began overflowing in the morning, Rajkot Mayor Bina Acharya, Rajkot Municipal Corporation commissioner Banchhanidhi Pani and other officials visited the site. The dam provides drinking water to around 15 lakh residents of Rajkot city.
The reservoir was 85 per cent full at 11 am on Sunday with the water level standing at 27 feet. However, the water level at the dam touched the crest level of 29 feet Monday morning and began overflowing after the very heavy overnight rain.
The state irrigation department has been been pumping Narmada water through the pipeline network of Saurashtra Narmada Avtaran Irrigation Yojana, which is another cause of heavy inflow into the dam. It was stopped after the dam overflowed on Monday, Municipal Commissioner Pani said.
Before it was linked to the Narmada canal network in 2017, Aji-I dam used to overflow once every four years. Since then, dam has overflowed twice in three years. The irrigation department had released Narmada water on both occasions. Without the inflow of Narmada water, the dam had last overflowed in 2013.
Besides Rajkot taluka in the district, heavy rain was recorded in Lodhika (4 inch), Kotda Sangani (3 inch) and Jetpur (2 inch) in the 36 hours ending at 6 pm Monday.
Almost entire Jamnagar district received heavy rain. Kalavad and Kamnagar and Jamjodhpur talukas recorded three inches each while Jodiya taluka received two inches. A two-storey house collapsed in Ambaji Chowk of Jamnagar city on Monday afternoon but no one was injured.
Meanwhile, Porbandar district recorded very heavy rain during the period: Porbandar taluka (5 inches) and Kutiyana taluka (8 inches). Ranava taluka received 2 inches of rain. In neighbouring Junagadh district, Manavadar taluka recorded five inches of rain in the 24 hours ending at 6 am on Monday while Junagadh city received three inches of rain and Vanthali taluka logged two inches. In coastal Devbhoomi Dwarka district, Kalyanpur taluka received two inches of rain while Khambhaliya recorded 1.5 inches.
In Morbi district also, Tankara and Morbi talukas recorded two inches of rain each, with a similar volume reported at Chotila and Chuda talukas of Surendranagar district. In Bhavnagar district, Palitana taluka recorded six inches of rain while Umrala recorded three inches. Ghogha and Bhavnagar talukas recorded more than two inches of rain, as did Una taluka of Gir Somnath. In Kutch district, Abdada and Rapar talukas received three inches of rain each, while Mandvi and Nakhtrana recorded two inches each.
Following very heavy rainfall, over 20 dams in Saurashtra either started overflowing or the irrigation department started releasing floodwaters from them to maintain the rule-level in the reservoirs. This was the case with Aji-II, III and IV dams in Rajkot and Jamnagar districts, Nyari-I, another major source of drinking water for Rajkot city as well as Nyari-II, Demi-I, II and II; Machhu-I, II and III and Bangawadi dam in Morbi district, Und-I and II and Kankavati dams in Jamnagar, Limdi Bhogavo-I, Nayka, Triveni Thanga and Morsal dams in neighbouring Surendra-nagar district, and Veri, Dondi, and Motisar dams in Rajkot district.
With the latest rains, 12 districts of Saurashtra-Kutch regions have received almost near-normal rainfall this year.