BHUBANESWAR: With no substantial rain for the last 24 hours, people in the flood-hit southern and western districts of the State heaved a sigh of relief on Friday. Those who had taken refuge at cyclone shelters have started returning to their homes.
Sources said around 1.77 lakh people from 1035 villages and six urban local bodies in nine districts have been affected in flash floods. While four persons have been killed, two are still missing.
The districts which have been affected are Kalahandi, Rayagada, Koraput, Nabarangpur, Kandhamal, Gajapati, Malkangiri, Sambalpur and Balangir. Though damage assessment is underway, as per preliminary estimation, 2081 houses have collapsed.
Even as water in Indravati has started receding, residents of Kotpad, Borrigumma in Koraput district and Kosagumuda in Nabarangpur district who are residing close to its banks are still scared.
Several pockets in Kotpad and Kosagumuda are underwater and hundreds of acres of paddy and sugarcane crops remained submerged for the last two days. Road communication to block headquarters from 50 villages in Koraput district and 20 in Nabarangpur district is snapped due to damage of roads and culverts. Government officials are finding it difficult to reach the affected villages to assess flood damage.
While water level in major rivers of Malkangiri is receding, inflow from Polavaram dam in Andhra Pradesh has caused Saveri river to rise. Water from the dam has flowed into Muga point near the confluence of rivers Saveri, Sileru and Godavari in Motu block.
A culvert on Khandadhar-Lalei road in Sundargarh district was washed away disrupting direct communication to Khandadhar tourism site and over a dozen villages in Lahunipara block of Bonai sub-division.
A Revenue Department official said all evacuated persons have returned homes and most of the road communications have been restored. “Assessment of damages to private as well as public property is underway,” he added.