As the Southwest monsoon remained active over Saurashtra and Kutch, Khambhaliya in Devbhumi Dwarka was deluged with 11.49 inches of rainfall between 6 pm and 8 pm on Sunday, prompting the district administration to evacuate over 100 persons from the low-lying areas in the town. The taluka recorded 17 inches of rainfall in 12 hours till 8 pm.
All the 12 districts of Saurashtra-Kutch region received heavy rain. A farmer was killed after being struck by lightning in Surendranagar while a man transporting carcasses of domestic animals went missing after being washed away in a flooded causeway in Rajkot city.
Ranavav and Porbandar talukas in Porbandar district too reported heavy rainfall of 6 inch and 4.7 inch respectively, while Sutrapada in Gir Somnath district received 4 inches of rain till 8 pm. South Gujarat districts, including Surat, Navsari and Valsad, also received heavy downpour.
The exceptionally heavy rainfall in Khambhaliya led to waterlogging in low-lying areas in the town, the district headquarters of Devbhumi Dwarka.
“Khambhaliya recorded 12 inches of rain between 6 pm and 8 pm on Sunday… But since these were the first heavy showers of the season and dams and reservoirs in the area were empty, no mishap or emergency was reported. The rain stopped around 8.13 pm. But since there is forecast of similar rainfall over the next 11 hours, we are evacuating around 100 to 120 people from low-lying areas,” Devbhumi Dwarka district collector Narendra Kumar Meena told The Indian Express.
Vikram Rahevar, 33, a farmer from Tidana village of Muli taluka in Surendranagar district, was struck by lightning at 9.45 am when he was working on his agricultural field near Umrada village. “He died on the spot,” Muli police said.
Muli taluka recorded 22 millimetres (mm) rain between 6 am and 4 pm on Sunday, while the neighbouring Chuda and Sayla talukas of Surendranagar registered 49 mm and 46 mm rainfall respectively.
An MUV transporting carcasses of a cow and a buffalo was swept away in Khokhaddadi river while crossing a flooded causeway across the river in Velnathpara area of Kothariya village in Rajkot city that recorded 29 mm rain. “Three persons — Bhavesh Rathod (30), Prakash Chavd (22) and Bhikho (28) — were swept away in the floodwaters… While Rathod and Chavda were rescued, Bhikho is missing and rescue operation is on,” said officials at the flood control room in Rajkot.
The India Meteorological Department (IMD) has issued a forecast of an active spell across the state till July 9. “A low pressure area has developed over Kutch and neighbourhood and associated cyclonic circulation extends upto 5.8 km above mean sea level tilting southwards. It is very likely to become more marked in the next 24 hours,” the IMD bulletin stated.
“Further, the off-shore trough at mean sea level from Gujarat coast to north Kerala coast that persists along with the monsoon trough at mean sea level continues to pass through center of low pressure area of Kutch and neighbourhood, Ahmedabad, Raisen, Seoni, Pendra Road, Sambalpur, centre of low pressure area over Northwest Bay of Bengal off Odisha and Gangetic West Bengal coasts and thence southeastwards to East Central Bay of Bengal,” it added.
Heavy to very heavy rain with isolated extremely heavy rain is expected in Dwarka and Kutch on Monday and Tuesday. Also, heavy to very heavy rain is very likely at isolated places in Bharuch, Surat, Navsari, Valsad and in Daman, Dadara Nagar Haveli, Jamnagar, Porbandar, Junagadh, Morbi, Surendranagar, Rajkot, Amreli, Bhavnagar, Gir Somnath, Botad, Kheda, Ahmedabad, Anand, Panchmahal, Dahod, Mahisagar, Narmada and Tapi.
Govt gears up
The state government has declared that based on the rainfall forecast by the State Emergency Operation Centre (SEOC), all dangerous roads in the districts expected to report heavy rainfall would be closed fro traffic along with prohibiting movement of traffic over flooded rivers, rivulets and causeways.
“Further all talukas in districts would be alerted about important information to ensure that power disruption is not stretched to long hours, affecting the drinking water supply… Availabilty of emergency water tankers would be made at all those villages affected by power failure…,” stated a release from the state government.
The state government has also ordered to prepare a list of officials of district panchayat and engineers of other departments and keep teams to access damage to houses on stand-by. The respective taluka development officer and mamlatdar too have to keep all arrangments in place for the survey of damage to buildings due to heavy rainfall, the statement added.
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