Bathinda, Nov 8: The army was called out as a 20-feet breach in the Sirhind canal branch inundated the low lying areas in four localities of the city this morning.
According to official sources water entered about 400 houses in the Hansraj, Preet Nagar, Paras Nagar and cardboard factory areas in the periphery of the city. However no loss of life was reported as the district administration assisted by the irrigation department engineers and the army plugged the breach late in the afternoon.
Deputy Commissioner Rahul Tewari told reporters at the spot that the breach took place at around 0430 hours and water began entering the four localities. Intially the breach was 10 to 12 feet wide and occured on the left bank of the canal.
The DC said that the people of the locality informed the local police and after assessing the situation, assistance from the army was sought. The breach widened further and when the plugging exercise started it was 20-feet wide.
Mr Tewari said the four localities house a number of slums and residents here are by and large employed in factories. The residents shifted their belongings to safer areas when water began entering their houses, he added.
He said that though there was no loss of life but a number of walls of houses caved-in. He said that the damage would be assessed and thereafter compensation would be paid.
Some of the houses remained in two to three feet of water, he added. Pumping sets were also rushed to the site to pump out the water from the localities, he said.
After the breach the irrigation department officials informed their superiors who immediately stopped the discharge of water into the canal in Ludhiana district, Superintendent Engineer Amarjit Singh said when contacted. Bhakra Beas Management Board (BBMB) was also informed of the breach.