Death toll 65: J-K under flood, no respite in downpour

Kashmir flood
Residents being rescued from their houses in Srinagar city of Kashmir region. Photographs by Shahid Tantray

SRINAGAR: Flash flood and landslides triggered by heavy rainfall have claimed 65 lives so far in the state, 45 people were killed after a vehicle they were traveling in was washed away by flash flood in Rajouri district on Thursday.

However, 20 people were killed in Kashmir due to rain related incidents since the rain and flash flood started in the Valley.

According to the police sources, the bus went out of drivers control and plunged into the river near Noushera town of district Rajouri.

The police have launched the rescue operation to retrieve the bodies from flooded water.

Incessant rainfall lashed the valley since last three days, triggering floods and landslides in various parts, however, the state MeT department has predicted no improvement in weather till 6 September.

The 300- km long Srinagar- Jammu national highway was closed on Thursday due to continuous rainfall triggering landslides on the highway.

The state government has sounded high alert in the valley as the river Jhelum was flowing above the danger mark.

The Bone and Joint Hospital Srinagar and the Hajj House situated at Bemina area of the city were flooded with rain water.

As per the reports the patients at the Bone and Joint Hospital were shifted to the upper stories of the buildings following water-logging.

The Chief Engineer, Irrigation and Flood Control, Mir Javid Jaffer said that the latest water level of river Jhelum at Sangam in south Kashmir is 28.85 feet which is 5 feet above danger level, however, the water level in Srinagar is 21.60 feet; the level is 3.5 feet above the danger mark.

“The rains are not stopping and water level is above danger mark. We have directed all the zonal flood committees to be present in their respective control rooms,” Jaffer told The Kashmir Walla.

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According to the Divisional Commissioner, Kashmir, the current situation is grim, the water level of river Jhelum is above danger level and we have initiated joint control rooms which are continuously monitoring the flood control situation in valley.

He added that administration has also set up a Control room in Srinagar to monitor the flood situation that has arisen due to the incessant rainfall.

“Various engineering departments including UEED, PWD, IFC, PDD have been stationed in the control room, they are monitoring the situation” said divisional commissioner.

He added more than 100 boats have been put for rescue operation in order to prevent any loss of human lives and property.

“People living on the banks of river Jhelum are advised to shift to safer places” he added.

Under emergency circumstances, “the people are informed to contact on Phone Nos. 0194-2474040, 2452138, 2455883 for any kind of help from the Government, said official.

Several villages in Kashmir valley are under water with people being rescued by district administration.

As per the reports till now, district administration have issued flood alert warnings, hundreds of people were rescued so far in flood-hit villages of Pulwama and Baramulla district.

“The schools and colleges in Srinagar will remain closed till 7 September in view of prevailing flood threat” said divisional commissioner, Srinagar.

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