Heavy rains pound south, central Gujarat; over 1,500 evacuated

Heavy rainfall lashed several parts of Chhota Udepur, Panchmahal and Dang district, with Bodeli taluka in Chhota Udepur receiving 433 mm rainfall in just 12 hours, causing flooding of low-lying areas

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PTI

Heavy rains pounded parts of south and central Gujarat districts, sending rivers in spate and inundating various low-lying areas, leading to the evacuation of 1,500 people, officials said on Sunday.

The Met department has predicted heavy to very heavy rainfall over the next five days in the Dang, Navsari and Valsad districts in south Gujarat.

Very heavy rainfall lashed several parts of Chhota Udepur, Panchmahal (both in central Gujarat) and Dang district, with Bodeli taluka in Chhota Udepur receiving 433 mm rainfall in just 12 hours till 6 pm on Sunday, causing flooding of low-lying areas and raising the water level of Uchh and Heran rivers over danger mark, officials said.

"We have so far rescued 65 people from low-lying areas of Bodeli town and Akona village in Nasvari taluka in the Chhota Udepur district. More than 800 people have been shifted to safer places," said deputy mamlatdar Satish Mal.

Authorities in the Navsari district are also on alert with the Kaveri and Ambika rivers in the district flowing above the danger mark.

Some low-lying areas in Valsad were flooded after a rise in the Orsang river level due to heavy rains on Saturday night and Sunday morning, they said.

More than 700 people were evacuated from low-lying areas in Navsari and Valsad districts, but 400 of them returned (to their houses) after rainfall abated in Valsad, officials said.

Several roads, bridges and causeways were damaged and flooded with rain water, affecting the movement of people in the affected areas.

The India Meteorological Department (IMD) on Sunday predicted heavy to very heavy rainfall with isolated extremely heavy showers during the next five days in the Dang, Navsari and Valsad districts.

Several other districts in south and central Gujarat and the Saurashtra region are also likely to receive heavy to very heavy rainfall during this period, the IMD said.

The Kaveri and Ambika rivers in the Navsari district are flowing above the danger mark. We are carrying out evacuation from low-lying areas. So far, over 300 people have been shifted to safer places and the operation is continuing with the help of a company of the National Disaster Response Force (NDRF), district Collector Amit Prakash Yadav said.

In Valsad, more than 400 people were evacuated after the Orsang river level rose which led to the flooding of low-lying areas, officials said.

On Sunday, there was some respite in Valsad as the water level receded, following which people started returning to their homes, they said.

Several dams and rivers in the south and central Gujarat and Saurashtra have received heavy rains since Saturday. Many rivers are flowing near the danger mark.

Apart from Chhota Udepur, Jambughoda in the Panchmahal district received 245 mm rainfall, Waghai and Ahva in the Dang district received 205 and 172 mm rainfall, respectively, and Dolvan in Tapi recorded 158 mm rainfall in 12 hours till 6 pm on Sunday, the State Emergency Operation Centre (SEOC) said.

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