DADU: As many as 35 villages came under water after flood protective embankment developed a 70-foot wide breach at RD-50 near Molvi Noor Mohammad Rodhnani village in Johi taluka on Sunday while over 400 villages in Kachho remained marooned after Nai Gaaj and other natural rainwater drains overflowed their banks in the wake of heavy rains for the fifth day.
Irrigation department personnel had started plugging the breach, which had also flooded standing crops of onion, chili and paddy on 1000 acres of land including and 10 fish ponds. Two link roads in the area also submerged.
Affected villagers complained that Dadu district administration had done nothing to provide tents to the affected families at safe places. Several families were still stranded in flooded homes and waiting for boats to rescue them, they said.
400 villages in Kachho remain marooned for fifth day
But Provincial Disaster Management Authority director general Syed Salman Shah said that 250 tents were handed over to Dadu deputy commissioner for the flood-affected people three days ago. 500 more tents and 1000 mosquito nets would reach Dadu on Monday, he said.
Twelve villages were directly hit by floodwater of Nai Gaaj drain were several houses were washed away, Wahi-Gorakh Hills Station road was damaged at different places and five local tourists from Karachi, Hyderabad and Larkana were stranded at the Gorakh hill resort.
The floodwaters caused six breaches of 4,000 feet each in Wahi-Johi link road and washed away large portions of Drigh Bala-Rajo Gandho link road connecting 200 villages of Kachho, cutting off road link of all the villages.
Chhinni-Johi road also submerged at four different places cutting off a large population in 100 villages to disconnect from each other due to heavy flow of floodwater towards Nai Gaaj drain.
The damage caused to the flood protective embankment by the floodwater of Nai Gaaj and eight other drains was being repaired by irrigation personnel with the help of heavy machinery at RD 48 and 38 near Johi. The floodwater is now moving towards Manchhar Lake, according to officials.
Secretary Irrigation Sohail Ahmed Qureshi who supervised repair work along the FP dyke said that the department was ready to tackle all emergency situations.
Manchhar Lake level rises to 109 feet Water level in Manchhar Lake has been rising for the past five days, reaching 109.9 feet RL (reduced level) on Sunday, according to irrigation officials.
Engineer Mahesh, who has set up a camp at the lake to monitor the situation, said that water level would be in the normal range even after it reached 110 to 212 feet RL.
He said that the lake’s embankments could sustain pressure even if the level rose to 124 feet RL because the embankments had been raised to 128 feet from RD 0 to 162 and top of embankment was raised to 130 feet from RD 162 to 100 RD in the wake of 2010 super floods, he said.
Published in Dawn, July 19th, 2021