Two people died while another was injured in rain-related incidents in Maharashtra, battered by intense rainfall for nearly a week, as the IMD warned on Saturday that more heavy showers are expected in the next 24 hours. The India Meteorological Department cautioned people, saying heavy rainfall warning on a “very-high-tide day” in the Arabian Sea was “not a good combination”.
Thousands of passengers remained stranded for hours at stations between Thane and Panvel of the Central Railway as train movement was hit on water-logged tracks. The Godavari river was flowing above the danger mark in Nashik district. Officials asked people living along the banks of rivers in the state to remain alert as water from several dams had been released following heavy rains over the past few days. On Friday, an IMD forecast said several areas along the west coast will continue to receive moderate-to-heavy rainfall.
In Gujarat, as the central Vadodara city recovered from the ferocity of the Vishwamitri river, many areas in southern part of the state, mainly Surat and Valsad districts, were hit by a heavy downpour. Several rivers in Gujarat too were flowing near the danger mark. Officials said four teams of NDRF have been deployed in the south Gujarat region.
Between Saturday morning and afternoon, Olpad taluka in Surat received 298mm rainfall and Umerpada received 204mm. Dharampur in Valsad district received 125 mm rains, according to the State Emergency Operation Centre. “As the Kim river, which flows through Surat district, crossed the warning level of 11 metres, personnel of the National Disaster Response Force and the State Disaster Response Force were deployed to evacuate residents from low- lying areas,” said District Collector Dhaval Kumar Patel.
Gujarat has received 51.49 per cent of annual average rainfall for this season till Saturday, SEOC data showed, with districts of south Gujarat receiving the maximum rainfall. On the east coast, a fresh low-pressure area is likely to form over northeast Bay of Bengal in next 48 hours which may bring more rainfall to Odisha and neighbouring states till August 7, an official of the regional meteorological centre in Bhubaneswar said. The Odisha government has issued advisories to collectors of Malkangiri, Koraput, Nabarangpur, Kalahandi and Nuapada districts to monitor the situation as heavy rains may create flood-like situation in the areas.
However, the situation in rain-battered Malkangiri improved considerably on Saturday. In Maharashtra’s Thane district, a person was electrocuted while another was seriously injured in a roof-collapse incident in Mumbra. A 30-year-old man died after he fell into a swollen nullah. Several other districts in Maharashtra received rainfall through the day.
In Palghar district, more than a dozen instances of house collapse due to heavy rains were reported. Several villages were marooned and a video showed cattle getting swept away by the current. Education institutes remained shut on Saturday. The Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation issued an advisory for Mumbai residents to not venture into the sea or in water-logged areas. BMC, too, said in a tweet that a holiday has been declared for schools and colleges in the city.
In the afternoon, train services between Kurla and Sion were suspended due to rise in water level and high tide. Chief spokesperson of the Central Railway, Sunil Udasi, said suburban trains were running with “cautious speed”. However, flight operations at Mumbai airport were not impacted, an airport official said. Parts of Delhi, Rajasthan, Punjab, Haryana and Himachal Pradesh received light rainfall, though the humidity level in the national capital peaked towards the evening.
The Meteorological department has issued the second-highest “orange” warning for extremely heavy rainfall in Himachal Pradesh for Monday and a the least threatening “yellow” warning for Tuesday.