Sunday, July 08, 2007

High alert sounded in four Rajasthan districts

Jodhpur, July 8 (PTI): Hundreds of people from four districts in Rajasthan were evacuated to safer places and a high alert was sounded in the region after the water level in the Luni river rose dangerously, officials said today.

The water level in Luni river rose following the collapse of protection wall of Jaswant Sagar Pichyak dam in Pichyak village last night, Regional Flood Control Room of the Water Resources Department said.

High alert have been sounded in Jodhpur, Pali, Barmer and Jalore districts and the Army and Air Force have been asked to be prepared for any eventuality, officials said.
The 150 feet long protection wall of the 118-year-old dam in Pichyak village, around 70 kilometers away from Jodhpur city, collapsed causing a rise of four to ten feet in the water level of the river, they said.

The dam had been overflowing after 28 years due to a heavy downpour on July 4, they said, adding a further rise in the water level is expected till evening.

However, the water discharge from the collapsed wall has reduced as compared to the discharge of 7000 cusec per hour last afternoon, they said.

The administration has evacuated people from the low-lying areas on the river bank and people in 10 villages near Sojat in Pali, 68 in Barmer and 28 villages near Sanchore in Jalore district have been advised to go to higher places, said Kiran Soni Gupta, Divisional Commissioner of Jodhpur.

The leakage in the dam was spotted on Friday evening. Ten army divers were air dropped into the dam, but force of water prevented them from repairing the protection wall, which collapsed completely.

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