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Flood-like situation in rain-hit Gujarat; 10k shifted

Over 200 people had to be rescued after they got stranded due to heavy waterlogging and flood-like situation

Flood-like situation in rain-hit Gujarat; 10k shifted

Heavy rain coupled with the release of water from major dams like Sardar Sarovar, Ukai and Kadana battered several parts of Gujarat, mainly in south and central parts of the state on Sunday necessitating evacuation of nearly 10,000 people to safety in five districts.

Over 200 people had to be rescued after they got stranded due to heavy waterlogging and flood-like situation.

Several villages in Bharuch, Narmada and Vadodara - the worst affected districts - faced flooding in low-lying areas, leaving several villages marooned.

The incessant rain in Ahmedabad threw normal life out of gear as citizens avoided going out as roads remained waterlogged.

Towards evening, the city also experienced thunderstorms and occasional heavy rain. Ahmedabad received 84mm of rainfall till 8pm on Sunday.

Chief minister Bhupendra Patel conducted an aerial survey of the district to take stock of the situation. No casualties were reported.

The India Meteorological Department (IMD) has issued a red alert for Panchmahal, Dahod, Kheda, Aravalli, Mahisagar, Banaskantha and Sabarkantha districts predicting isolated extremely heavy rainfall till Tuesday morning.

It has also warned of isolated heavy to very heavy rainfall in Gujarat in its forecast till Thursday morning.

The Sardar Sarovar Dam in Narmada reached its full reservoir level (FRL) of 138.68 metres for the first time this monsoon on Sunday morning, resulting in authorities opening 23 of the facility's 30 sluice gates to release excess water coming from the catchment areas in neighbouring Madhya Pradesh.

The dam is considered the lifeline of the western state and its reaching the FRL will bring relief to the administration as well as citizens.

Apart from Narmada, rain-fed rivers such as Orsang, Heran, Mahi, Meshri and Panam are swollen due to heavy rain coupled with the release of water from various dams, resulting in inundation of low-lying villages.

National Disaster Response Force (NDRF) and local rescue teams evacuated people stranded in flooded areas, including around 70 students of are sidential school in Narmada district, and around 100 labourers trapped under a bridge near a riv er in Panchmahal district. Some patients stranded in a hospital in Vasantpa ra village in Narmada district were also rescued by an NDRF team.

Meanwhile, incessant downpour severely disrupted train services in Central Gujarat on Sunday.

As many as ni ne trains had to be cancelled owing to heavy rains, four rescheduled and as many as 11 diverted in the up direction track between Godhra and Ratlam division.

Train traffic remained susp ended due to the heavy rains, even as the work of restoration of the up direction track was progressing on war footing.

The release of water from the Sardar Sarovar Dam took a political turn with Gujarat Congress president Shaktisinh Gohil alleging that the flood-like situation in several villages downstream of the dam was because the state government timed release of water to coincide with the birthday of Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Sund ay.

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