Heavy rain, floods wreak havoc across J&K

Dozens of structures damaged due to flood in Nallah at Kalika Colony in Jammu. -Excelsior/Rakesh
Dozens of structures damaged due to flood in Nallah at Kalika Colony in Jammu. -Excelsior/Rakesh

IMD issues orange alert for J&K

Gopal Sharma
JAMMU/SRINAGAR, July 12: Breaking record of over past 32 years, heavy rain lashed Jammu areas, causing massive floods and extensive damage to the public property while many roads have been closed due to landslides.

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The India Meteorological Department (IMD) has issued an organge alert for J&K while yellow alert for adjoining Himachal Pradesh. The IMD has predicted heavy rain across the Northern region during next two more days.
The Jammu- Srinagar National Highway was blocked due to over-night rain at Samroli near Udhampur and Magarkote-Digdol area in Ramban sector but it was restored after 2-3 hours of closure. The traffic remained moving on snail’s pace on the highway in Ramban sector till late this evening due to single passage at several places after landslides.
Official sources said that due to landslides at Samroli during early hours today, the busy National Highway was blocked. However, it was restored within two hours. The movement of traffic was also disupted twice in Magarkote and Digdol areas during the day today due to falling of boulders. However, the road was restored after clearance work. Slow movement of vehicles and traffic jams were witnessed in Ramban, Chanderkote and Digdol areas during the whole day today.
Sources further said that Jammu City recorded the highest ever rainfall of 150.6 mm during the past 24 hours since 1989 for the month of July. Heavy downpour was witnessed in other parts of the region as well. Katra and Samba received massive 76.6 mm and 119 mm rainfall, respectively during past 24 hours till 8 am today. Kathua recorded 24.8 mm, Batote 25.4 mm while Banihal 6.4 mm rainfall till 8.30 am today, the spokesman said.
The spokesman further said that moderate to heavy rain is likely to continue during next two more days, particularly in Jammu region which may cause flash floods in some areas and the temperature may stay 3-10 degree Celsius below normal.
At Kalika Colony of Bahu Fort area in Jammu, the flood water in Nallah wreaked havoc and caused extensive damage to over two dozen houses and other structures. Rain and Nallah water entered many houses in Shastri Nagar, Nanak Nagar, Gandhi Nagar, Trikuta Nagar, Channi Rama, Jawahar Nagar, Preet Nagar, Gangyal, Canal Road and Talab Tilloo areas. The public and vehicles movement remained affected till late hours in flooded streets today. The flood water caused massive damage to household goods and electronic gadgets of the people. A long wall of CRPF Centre at Ban Talab was collapsed while a small bridge at Gadigarh in Gandhi Nagar constituency was damaged. The flooded Nallah water also entered nearby Police Post and Govt school at Gadigarh besides many adjoining areas.
A car was trapped in the mud-slide on Doda-Kashtigarh road during morning hours today. However, the people onboard had narrow escape as they ran away leaving the vehicle. Thathri -Gandoh and several other link roads in Doda and Ramban were closed due to landslides.
Chenab, Tawi, Basantar, Tarnah and Ujh rivers besides many other Nallahs were flooded during morning hours today, but the water receded after 11 am. Eleven members of a nomad family were trapped in Ujh river and were later rescued by police and SDRF men. Eight cattle were also washed away in flooded Ujh river from Ghati and Rajbagh areas today. Traffic on several link roads in Kathua, Dyala Chak-Billawar, Samba-Sumb, Vijaypur, Gharota and Akhnoor, Khour area remained suspended due to flash flood in Nallahs.
The rain water was accumulated on highway at Hatli Morh, Kathua causing disruption in traffic movement for several hours. The rain water also entered many residential localities and markets in Kathua town due to heavy rain.
Basohli-Bani- Bhaderwah Road, Bani-Dhaggar and two other local roads in Bani Sub Division were closed due to land slides. The power supply was also snapped but it was restored in the afternoon.
Three houses in Bani sub division belonging to Mobeen Ali, Mohd Arif ( Koti Chadyar) and Chandu Ram (Backon) and two houses in Lohai Malhar area of Billawar were collapsed due to land slides and rain, however, no loss of life was reported.
In Samba district heavy, rain created flood-like situation in many areas. In the morning, water over flooded from the check dam on Basantar river in village Dalote of Sumb block, due to which both the earthen banks of the check dam were damaged and the water of the river entered Amli and Dalote villages causing massive damage.
Local resident Krishna Singh said that the rainy season has just started, if these banks of the dam are not repaired soon, then many of their villages can suffer a lot. At the same time, to take stock of the situation, officials of the Flood Control department including Assistant Commissioner Revenue, Jatinder Mishra and Tehsildar Samba Ram Paul Sharma from the district administration also reached the spot and took stock of the situation. They provided assistance to the two families and shifted them to a safe place. The District Administration also issued an alert and created a control room for assistance.
Samba- Mansar road was blocked as a truck was stuck due to falling debris near village Daboh in the morning, which was later pulled out with the help of a JCB machine. The traffic was suspended for about an hour on this road.
Reports from Doda said that as predicted by MeT Department torrential rains were witnessed across Chenab belt on Monday. Rain since early morning has triggered flash floods in several areas of district Doda, in which a vehicle was also damaged.
The flash floods have been reported from several places including Kastigarh, Machipal area of Gandoh and Kahara in district Doda, due to which Kastigarh-Doda, Thathri-Gandoh and Kahara-Hallaran road got closed.
Meanwhile, district administration Doda has issued an advisory in view of torrential rains.
“Due to heavy rains in district Doda today, which are expected to continue for two more days, there are chances of flood and damage of roads etc, therefore, public of district Doda is advised not to venture out and avoid travel by road,” the advisory issued by administration read.
Advisory issued by Administration also cautioned public not to go near electric poles, wires, transformers, rivers, Nallahs and slide prone areas. Beside try to keep your mobiles charged and inform Tehsil, Sub Division or District Administration immediately in case of any mishappening.
The administration also issued contact numbers in case of any emergency which include 01996233337 (District Control Room) and 01996233530 (PCR Doda).
Reasi-Mahore and Mahore-Chassana-Budhal road was blocked due to landslides. However, Reasi-Mahore link was restored in the evening. Pilgrimage to Mata Vaishnodevi continued smoothly despite rain. However, chopper service was hit due to bad weather.
Reports from Srinagar said mercury today took a dip across Kashmir after the overnight moderate to heavy rainfall lashed the Valley, bringing about a much-needed relief from the scorching heat.
The weatherman in its update said that the rains occurred on expected lines and that there was more coming for both Kashmir and Jammu regions.
Chief Weatherman at MeT’s Srinagar station, Sonum Lotus said that as expected very heavy showers occurred at many places of plains of Jammu whereas moderate showers reported at many places of Kashmir and hilly areas of Jammu.
“Today, the weather will remain overcast to cloudy at most places of J&K,” he added.
In the update, he also issued a warning stating that at present shower may generate flash flood and landslide in hilly area which may lead to blockage of roads.
Deputy Director, MeT Srinagar Dr Mukhtar Ahmad told Excelsior that Srinagar received 8.2mm of rain in 24 hours till 0830 hours and recorded a minimum temperature of 18.1 degrees Celsius against 22.8 degrees Celsius on the previous night and the maximum temperature today was recorded as 25 degrees Celsius which is around 8-degree deviation from the normal temperature.
In Kashmir, the MeT officials said, Pahalgam received the highest rainfall of 23.0 mm followed by Gulmarg which received 13.6mm of rain.
Gulmarg also recorded a considerable dip in the temperature with 10.6 degrees Celsius against 11.8 degrees Celsius during the night which is normal for the area during this time of the season. Pahalgam, similarly, recorded 14.8 degrees Celsius.
Qazigund received 5.2 mm of rain and Kokernag 7.4mm of rain. Kupwara town received 9.7 mm of rain and also witnessed a dip in mercury.
The weatherman had earlier informed that the lower-level easterly winds from the Bay of Bengal have further extended north-westwards, reaching up to Jammu, which then extended to Kashmir as well.
It has stated that due to the change in the system, low-level relative humidity has also increased over the region.
“The system is likely to cause heavy rain with thunder mainly in Pirpanjal Range of Jammu Division and plains of Jammu division on 12th July 2021,” it had warned, adding that light to moderate rain with thunder is expected in Kashmir division and light rain with thunder in Ladakh region.
The MeT warned that the change in the system may result in a moderate risk of flash flood in Ramban, Rajouri, Udhampur, Reasi, Jammu, Samba and Kathua districts.
The weatherman said that the change in the system could bring respite from the current scorching hot and humid weather during the next 3 days.
Meanwhile, a cloudburst today occurred in the Watlar area of Lar in Central Kashmir’s Ganderbal district which triggered flash floods and resulted in damage to scores of residential houses in the area.
Officials said that while there was a loss of property, no loss of life whatsoever was reported during the flash floods that hit the area in the wee hours today.
However, due to the cloudburst, the water level, as well as the flow, has increased in the Charnari Nallah which has further caused damage to the adjoining residential houses. The teams were dispatched to the area to ascertain the extent of the cause.
In the meantime, over 150 sheep were killed after a cloud burst struck a far-flung area of Jawdara Bahak in the Tulail area of Gurez in North Kashmir.
Officials said that the cloud burst struck a sheep sheds in the area and killed over 150 sheep.
“The live-stock belonged to two nomads namely Sharief Poswal son of Ghulam Nabi and Muhammad Ayoub Bajran, son of Fauluddin,” officials said.
The teams of police as well those from the Revenue have rushed to the spot to ascertain the extent of the loss.