Bhubaneswar, July 16: Heavy rain has lashed most parts of Odisha, especially southern districts, since Saturday sending rivers like Vansadhara and Rushikulya into spate and flooding many areas.
Most parts of southern, western and coastal Odisha are reeling under water-logging which has disrupted vehicular movement. Water level was also rising in major rivers, officials said.
Special Relief Commissioner (SRC) B P Sethi said 12 districts of the state have received an average of 50 mm rainfall since yesterday. High volume of rainfall was recorded in districts like Kalahandi and Nuapada, he said.
Incessant rain has led to the rise in water level in several rivers, he said and added that officials concerned have been asked to remain watchful as rain was likely to continue till tomorrow, mainly in south and coastal Odisha.
Normal life was hit in the state capital of Bhubaneswar, Cuttack and the seaside pilgrim town of Puri due to continuous rain. In Bhubaneswar, low-lying areas in Jaydev vihar, Acharya Vihar, Nayapalli, Jagamara, Vani Vihar, Gouri Nagar, Tankapani Road, Old Town and Chandrasekharpur witnessed water-logging.
The incessant rain and the resultant water logging has prompted authorities to declare closure of all schools in Cuttack for the day, officials said.
To deal with the situation, the Bhubaneswar Municipal Corporation (BMC) has opened a control room for lodging of complaints about water logging. The situation is equally bad in Puri where the people are seen struggling to reach their destinations.
Devotees, who thronged the holy town for the Ratha Jatra festival of Lord Jagannath, have to wade through knee-deep water on 'Bada Danda', the Grand Road.
A portion of a boundary wall of the Markendaya pond in Puri collapsed following rain. Incessant rain also wreaked havoc in Kalahandi, Rayagada and Ganjam districts where several villages have been cut-off due to submergence of roads.
The water level in the Hati and the Tel rivers in Kalahandi district is rising steadily but remains below the danger mark, officials said adding rain water inundated many places in Dharmagarh and Junagarh areas of the district.
In view of the situation, all measures have been taken to provide dry foods and tarpaulin to people in the areas affected, an official said.
In Ganjam district, the situation remained grim as rainwater gushed into houses and farmlands in low-lying areas at Kabisuryanagar and Aska. Road links have been snapped in some areas, he said.
In Rayagada district, rainwater has submerged many villages in Bissamcuttack and Paikadakuluguda areas, whilethe Bansadhara river level is rising.
On Sunday, at least two persons were killed and 12 others injured when lightning struck them at Mahaguda in Odisha's Ganjam district.
The victims were working in paddy fields on the outskirts of the village located under the jurisdiction of Bhanjanagar police station on Sunday afternoon when lighting struck, they said.
They were rushed to the sub-divisional hospital at Bhanjangara where two of them were declared "brought dead" by doctors, police said.
The deceased, both women, were identified as Runu Gouda and Latika Gouda of the same village.
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