Bengaluru, Oct 22 : With flood situation grim in north Karnataka following heavy rains which has claimed twelve lives so far , the government has directed officials to take up relief works on a war footing.
Speaking to media persons at Vidhana Soudha here on Tuesday, the Revenue Minister of the state R Ashok said heavy rains have been lashing the Belagavi district, Koppala, Raichur, Davanagere, Chitaradurga, Bagalakote, Dharwad, Haveri, Udupi, Uttara Kannada, Shivamogga, South Canara, Mandya, Mysuru areas causing damage to properties. So far about 5444 houses were damaged in the rain havoc in all the affected districts in the state. In Belagavi 2, Koppal 4, Raichur 1, Bagalakote one, Dharward one, Mandya one and in Haveri 2 houses were ruined and deputy commissioners concerned have been asked to pay Rs five lakh compensation, he clarified.
The officer stated that nearly 45 domestic animals were killed in rain related incidents in all 12 flood relief camps with as many as 2176 affected people already taking shelter. He said government has asked the district in-charge ministers concerned to visit the affected places immediately besides holding video conferences with officials on the spot and relief works will be taken up on priority basis.He too will visit the Belagavi and Yadgir districts. He also clarified that the state government submitted flood relief report twice to the union government.
Belagavi district, badly battered in August floods, is staring at more grim news, with several villages marooned and roads under water. Incessant rain in the catchment areas of River Krishna in neighbouring Maharashtra is keeping people and authorities on tenterhooks.
Thousands of acres of agricultural areas were submerged under water and some of the villagers were also under threat of flood waters particularly in north Karnataka. The North-Western Karnataka State Road Transport Corporation has suspended operations on the Ramdurg-Belagavi Road as most of the route is under water. The Ramadurga bus stand has also been inundated.
For the past few days, torrential rains in north interior Karnataka have wreaked havoc as many rivers, rivulets and small streams are in spate, reminiscent of the floods in August this year, official sources said. The affected districts are Dharwad, Belagavi, Kalaburagi, Gadag, Vijayapura, Bagalkote, Shivamogga and Chikkamagaluru, where water has gushed into houses and government buildings, including schools and banks in low-lying areas. There were also reports of heavy rains in Hassan, Chikkamagaluru and Kodagu districts. Talacauvery, Bhagamandala, Napoklu were lashed for more than an hour. Rainwater gushed into many houses in low-lying areas in Chikkodi and some other places, forcing people to take shelter on roof-tops.
Three houses collapsed in Shahpur, a suburb of Belagavi city.
Many inter-village connectivity roads were inundated, causing stoppage of traffic. National Highway 4 was closed at night on Sunday and hundreds of vehicles, including state transport buses, were stranded on both sides of the Sutagatti ghat.
A Karnataka State Road Transport Corporation bus coming towards Belagavi from Panagutti was stuck on the road after it caved in due to heavy rains.
The Belgaum-Goa route was also affected near Jamboti due to a landslide, which swept away many parked vehicles, the sources said. In Belagavi district's Gokak town, water from the Ghataprabha river inundated many areas, creating panic among the residents.The town was badly affected by the floods in August.
In Dharwad district, a stream at Bennehalla in Navalgund Taluk is raging, threatening to inundate the national highway connecting Solapur in Maharashtra. In Kalaburagi too, a stream cut off connectivity between Anuru in Alanda Taluk and the neighbouring Maharashtra. The Karnataka State Natural Disaster Monitoring Centre director G S Srinivasa Reddy said the intensity of rains and inflow in Krishna and its tributaries may increase in the next two to three days as two upper air cyclonic systems in the Arabian Sea and the Bay of Bengal were bringing rain in the interior parts of Karnataka.