Floods, landslides wreck havoc in Jammu & Kashmir, thousands flee home to safer areas

With incessant rain and landslides claiming over 20 lives in Jammu and Kashmir and inundating several villages, the Centre on Friday sent two teams of the National Disaster Response Force (NDRF) to help in the relief and rescue work in flood-affected areas of the state.

By Ritesh K Srivastava | Updated: Sep 05, 2014, 16:56 PM IST
PlayFloods, landslides wreck havoc in Jammu & Kashmir, thousands flee home to safer areas

Srinagar: With incessant rain and landslides claiming over 20 lives in Jammu and Kashmir and inundating several villages, the Centre on Friday sent two teams of the National Disaster Response Force (NDRF) to help in the relief and rescue work in flood-affected areas of the state.

According to the Ministry of Home Affairs (MHA), two teams of NDRF have been air-lifted to Srinagar from Bhatinda and two more will be moved during the day.

Home Minister Rajnath Singh Thursday spoke to Chief Minister Omar Abdullah over phone and promised him all possible help to meet the challenge posed by the present unprecedented floods.

In the latest casualty, at least ten people were killed due to landslide in Rajouri district today.

At least twenty people have died in floods across Jammu and Kashmir in the last two days while hundreds of people have been forced to leave their homes due to incessant rains in the worst such situation in 50 years.

State Agriculture Minister Ghulam Hassan Mir said the rain has caused extensive damage to the paddy crop in the Kashmir Valley.

"This is the worst flood situation in the valley in the last 50 years," Mir told reporters after visiting flood-affected areas in Baramulla district.

Hundreds of people have abandoned their homes as the flood situation turned grim in the Valley Friday.

The flood situation became serious with unprecedented heavy downpour continuing for the fourth day today.

The administration here is finding it difficult to reach the inundated areas.

Reports from all the 10 districts of the Valley indicate hundreds have abandoned homes in inundated areas to shift to safer places.

Electric supply in most areas of South Kashmir districts remains suspended because of uprooted electric poles and apprehensions of accidents due to electric short circuits in water logged villages and towns.

Four people were killed in floods in the valley in the last two days while 16 others lost their lives in Reasi, Rajouri, Poonch and Kishtwar districts of Jammu region, as per reports on Thursday.

The state government has declared a high alert in all 10 districts of the Kashmir valley, seven districts in Jammu region, and the two districts of Kargil and Leh in Ladakh.

At least two dozen residential areas in Srinagar have been inundated by flood waters, forcing residents to abandon their homes. Officials said the worst damage has been caused in Anantnag, Kulgam and Baramulla districts.

Dozens of bridges, government buildings and houses have been washed away by floods.

The flood control department said the water level of the Jhelum river at Sangam in Anantnag district has crossed 30 feet -- seven feet above the danger mark, while the river was flowing four feet above the danger mark at Ram Munshi Bagh in Srinagar.

The Chenab river and all its tributaries in Jammu region are also flowing above the danger mark as heavy downpour continues for the fourth day today.

The Srinagar-Jammu and the Srinagar-Leh national highways have been closed for traffic because of landslides and flash floods at a number of places.

Haj flights from the state to Saudi Arabia have been cancelled for three days due to the floods.

All educational institutions have been closed till Monday. The University of Kashmir has also postponed all examinations till Monday.

All district magistrates and superintendents of police were camping at flood control rooms at the district headquarters to monitor the situation and respond to emergencies.