MUZAFFARGARH/GUJRAT: The irrigation department and the Muzaffargarh district administration issued on Friday a high flood warning in the Chenab River in Muzaffargarh and asked the people living in flood zone from Head Trimmu in Jhang district to Head Panjnad in Muzaffargarh to move to safer places.

Due to heavy rain in different parts of the country, the Met office and the Punjab Disaster Management Authority told the district administration to be on high alert and evacuate the people from riversides.

Deputy Commissioner (DC) Amjad Shoaib Tareen said they had evacuated people from the riverside while the monitoring of spurs was ongoing. The irrigation officials said they were satisfied with the condition of spurs as they would withstand medium floods.

DC Tareen said that medium flood could affect the residents of Rangpur, Muradabad, Khangarh, Binda Ishaq and some places of Alipur tehsil of the district. He said the ongoing rain spell could turn the situation alarming.

Irrigation Executive Engineer (EXEN) Malik Mohammad Zain said that all spurs were intact and irrigation teams were busy to check the water level and to evacuate the people from dangerous places. He said on Friday there was a low level flood in the Chenab River and a 200,000 cusec water flow would pass from Muzaffargarh on Saturday and Sunday.

The DC said that there was no shortage of animal vaccine and medicine for people as medical teams with Rescue 1122 officials were on alert. He said the administration had set up relief camps for the displaced families.

The EXEN said if the water flow exceeded 700,000 cusecs in the River Chenab, many spurs would have to be dynamited to save the Muzaffargarh city and Multan cantonment areas. In 2010, when super floods hit Muzaffargarh, the administration had asked the Muzaffargarh people to evacuate the city. In 2014, more than 18 dozen villages of Muzaffargarh area were affected by the River Chenab flooding.

The leaves of health and irrigation officials have been cancelled. Many families were surprised to hear the announcement in mosques and speakers mounted on vehicles to evacuate homes. They said they were busy attending mourning processions of Muharram while there were no relief camps in sight.

GUJRAT: The Jhelum administration established seven flood relief camps in the district while a control room has also been functional to monitor the flood situation in the River Jhelum and flash flood in the seasonal channels.

At least 125,000 cusecs is being discharged from the Mangla dam that caused a high flood.

Jhelum Deputy Commissioner Rao Pervaiz Akhtar inspected the embankment in Jhelum city late on Thursday after the authorities at Mangla released 45,000 cusecs of water late at night whereas the earlier at 8pm on Thursday at least 80,000 cusecs were being discharged from the dam.

Adviser to Punjab Chief Minister Asif Mahmood visited Jhelum to review the flood situation and also inspected the embankment.

The adviser directed the administration to provide relief facilities in the affected areas without any discrimination.

The adviser learned the local government and other departments were also prepared to cope with the urban flooding as well as flood alerts are regularly being issued to the troubled areas along the river bank.

Published in Dawn, August 29th, 2020

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