4 Collectors in Odisha's on alert as Baitarani river crosses danger mark
Bhubaneswar : Special Relief Commissioner (SRC) Bishnupada Sethi on Saturday asked four District Collectors to remain on the alert as the Baitarani river crossed its danger mark.
The SRC asked the District Collectors of Keonjhar, Jajpur, Bhadrak and Kendrapada to alert field functionaries and administrative officials as flood situation is likely to occur in Baitarani river due to heavy rainfall in upper catchment area.
The Baitarani river was flowing at 18.47 m at Akhuapada in Bhadrak as against the danger mark of 17.83 m, said sources.
Due to heavy precipitation in the upper catchments, the water level at Anandapur may go up to 38.75 m by Saturday night and that at Akhuapada at 19.2 m by Sunday morning, said SRC.
Sethi said Odisha Disaster Rapid Action Force (ODRAF), fire service and National Disaster Response Force (NDRF) have been kept in readiness to meet any eventuality.
Six power boats each in Jajpur district and Bhadrak district are in readiness, he added.
The government has also cancelled the holidays of officials of Keonjhar, Jajpur, Bhadrak and Kendrapada districts for Saturday and Sunday.
Sources said several villages in Bhadrak district have been submerged in flood water while road communication in many parts of the district has been snapped as several main roads in various blocks have been flooded.
Keeping this in view, the SRC has asked the Collectors to stay prepared to meet any eventuality and depute mobile teams for close watch on vulnerable/weak river and canal embankments.
He also asked them to make necessary arrangements to plug the leakages and protect the weak points, check and ensure the readiness of power boats/country boats, identify villages and habitations likely to be inundated, if any, and arrange the evacuation of the vulnerable population immediately.
Multi-purpose flood and cyclone shelters in the area likely to be affected will be kept by the administration in readiness, including lighting and sanitation arrangement.
The Collectors have been asked to ensure that evacuated people are properly sheltered and cooked food, safe drinking water and health facility are made available to them.
Sethi also directed them to ensure the functioning of control room round the clock.