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Rain System In Uttarakhand Starts Weakening, Death Toll 72

Dehradun, Sep 20:  In some relief to the rain-battered Uttarakhand, the system that had created heavy rains in the hill state during the past few days has finally started weakening. "Uttarakhand will now get rains
PTI September 20, 2010 13:59 IST
PTI
Dehradun, Sep 20:  In some relief to the rain-battered Uttarakhand, the system that had created heavy rains in the hill state during the past few days has finally started weakening.

"Uttarakhand will now get rains only in very few areas," said Met Director Anand Sharma, a day after the rains wreaked havoc in the state where over 60 people were killed and thousands others rendered homeless due to floods, cloudbursts and landslides triggered by heavy rains during past few days.

The rains have also flooded most of the major rivers with the Ganga and Yamuna flowing 2 to 3 mt above the danger level.

According to Pauri District Magistrate Dilip Jawalkar, more than 500 main and link roads in the district have been damaged by rains.

Houses on the banks of river Alaknanda, which has reached 536 mt, have been vacated, he said.

 Monsoon rains also broke all time 44-year-old record in Dehradun yesterday by registering a 3000 mm of rainfall yesterday.

In Tehri, where the reservoir level crossed the danger 830 mt level, it has started receding as the water was being flown for the first time from the spillway of the 1000-Mw hydel project.

However, CMD of Tehri Hydro Development Corporation Limited (THDC) R S T Sai said the dam is safe and 850 cumax of water is being released from the reservoir.

Sai also said the construction work of 400 Mw Koteshwar dam has also been stopped due to the rise in water level of Bhagirathi river.

Tehri District Magistrate Radhika Jha said she had held meetings with top officials of the THDC and a high alert had already been issued for low lying areas near the dam.

After release of water from Tehri, the Ganga was flowing two to three mt above the danger level inundating scores of villages in Haridwar.

Chief Minister Ramesh Pokhriyal Nishank also took an aerial survey of the flood and disaster affected areas of the state.

Meanwhile, all schools today remained closed in the state. PTI

Haridwar:  At least 72 people are dead and 15 missing in Uttarakhand as heavy rain for the past five days has led to a flood-like situation.

Almora, Chamauli, Uttarkashi and Nainital are worst hit more than 25 homes washed away. Many tourist resorts near the Corbett National Park are damaged. Power an communication lines have snapped. The government has ordered schools to be shut till Tuesday.

Rising water can be seen in Rishikesh and Haridwar, as water was released from the Tehri dam. The water level of Ganga at Haridwar is almost two meters above the danger mark.

"If it breaches the 830 feet mark, there could be a deluge. The Teri dam has the capacity to hold water up to 830 feet. The Koteshwar dam will overflow as a result. Massive damage is feared in parts of Rishikesh, Haridwar and western Uttar Pradesh," said Ramesh Pokherial Nishank, Chief Minister, Uttarakhand.

The National Disaster Management Authority is sending in men and resources to rescue the marooned villagers.

100 Jawans with 20 boats from the National Disaster Response Force have been sent to Haridwar, another batch of 125 jawans and 25 boats of have been sent to Rishikesh.

With the weathermen warning of scattered rain and thundershowers in Uttarakhand, there will be little respite for a day or two.