Bhubaneswar: A day after Cyclone Titli battered Odisha and left behind a trail of destruction, the state is gearing up to restore power supply and road links amid concerns over a possible flood situation.
The cyclone has ‘weakened into a deep depression’, triggering incessant rainfall in the state, Special Relief Commissioner (SRC) B P Sethi said. Major rivers, especially the ones in south Odisha, are in spate and stretches of low-lying areas inundated by rainwater, he said.
A severe cyclonic storm packing winds of up to 150 kmph and widespread rains had hit eastern India Thursday, killing eight people in Andhra Pradesh and one in Odisha.
In Odisha, around 3 lakh people were evacuated from the vulnerable areas of five coastal districts, a day before the cyclone made a landfall. The situation is grim in Ganjam, Gajapati, Rayagada and Balasore districts as several rivers, including Rushikylya, Vansadhara and Jalaka, have started swelling due to the incessant rain, the SRC said.
“We have been moving people to safe places at Chikiti, Dharakote, Patrapur and Sanakhemundi blocks of Ganjam district as river Rushikulya is in spate. Over 1,000 people were also shifted to relief camps in Gunupur area due to rise in water level in river Vansadhara,” Sethi said.
The water level of Vansadhara river has touched 84.35m and 56.30m at Gunupur and Kashinagar respectively, crossing the danger mark of 84m and 54.6m. Similarly, the water level of river Rushikulya has crossed the mark of 16.83m and touched 18.60 metre at Purushottampur in Ganjam.
“The administration is prepared to deal with emergency situations,” the SRC said, adding that action was being taken to restore electricity and clear roads blocked by uprooted trees and electric poles.
The low-lying areas in Cuttack, Bhubaneswar and the pilgrim town of Puri, too, remained waterlogged due to rain.
“A large number of pumps have been engaged by Bhubaneswar Municipal Corporation (BMC) and Cuttack Municipal Corporation (CMC) to clear waterlogging,” a civic body official said.
The road connectivity on Lathipada-Shergad road in Ganjam has been disrupted, while a bridge on Badagada Jarau River washed away following the heavy rainfall, official sources said.
Similarly, the swelling Mahendratanaya river has submerged vast stretches of Gajapati district, cutting of road communication between Andhra Pradesh and Paralakhemundi in Odisha, they added.
Director of the metereological centre at Bhubaneswar, H R Biswas, said heavy to very heavy rainfall will continue to pound parts of the state, including Balasore, Bhadrak and Dhenkanal districts, till Saturday. Fishermen have been advised against venturing into the sea in view of adverse weather conditions, he added.