ROURKELA: Sudden rise in water level of Brahmani river at its origin point here has partially flooded low-lying areas of Rourkela on Thursday morning. The Sundargarh district administration has evacuated the affected people from Dandiapali and Balughat areas.
However, the situation is gradually improving. Till 6 pm on Thursday, Brahmani river was flowing at 179.58 metres against the danger level of 178.42 metres near Brahmani bridge at Panposh. Curious residents flocked to the spot to watch Brahmani river in spate.
Sources said though the situation was improving on Wednesday forenoon, Brahmani started receiving flood water from its tributary rivers Sankh and Koel and the situation changed overnight.
Panposh Sub-Collector H S Behera said there was flood threat in the city at 4 am on Thursday with Brahmani swelling menacingly and within a few hours, it was flowing at least three metres above the danger mark. About 1,000 residents of Dandiapali and Balughat areas were evacuated to safety after flood water partially submerged the areas. He said while about 400 of them returned to their houses after flood water receded, the rest were sheltered at Vidyut Colony School at Tarkera.
The Sub-Collector attributed the situation to continuous flow of flood water into Brahmani from the swelling Koel and Mandira dam of Rourkela Steel Plant on Sankh. He said after water level of Koel river started receding from 2 pm onwards, the situation in Brahmani river started improving, yet it continues to flow 1.5 metres above the danger level. The Sub-Collector also said that the low-lying Hamirpur was briefly submerged with flood water of Koel river.
Officials of Sundargarh Irrigation Division and Central Water Commission (CWC) are monitoring Brahmani at Panposh. They attributed the flooding of Sankh and Koel to long spell of heavy rainfall in catchments of Chhattisgarh and Jharkhand.
RSP sources said seven of the 11 gates of Mandira dam are open since Tuesday night and the rest four gates have been opened from Thursday morning after flood water of Sankh from Chhattisgarh started flowing into the dam. They said between 5 am and 6 am on Thursday, Mandira dam’s water holding rose to 689 feet against the danger mark of 683 feet. They said the dam continues to release 20,000 cusec water.