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Rains wreak havoc in Maharashtra, Andhra | CJ pics

TimePublished on Sun, Aug 10, 2008 at 13:36, Updated at Mon, Aug 11, 2008 in Nation section

HYDERABAD BLUES: Citizen Journalist Nitish Singh sent us this picture from Hyderabad.

HYDERABAD BLUES: Citizen Journalist Nitish Singh sent us this picture from Hyderabad.

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New Delhi: Heavy rains have thrown life out of gear in Pune, many parts of the Konkan region and Andhra Pradesh.

The Pune-Mumbai intercity trains have been cancelled and many trains, including the Mumbai-Banglore Udyan Express and the Mumbai-Nagarcoil Express have been diverted.

Heavy waterlogging has been reported from Chiplun, Rajapur, Khed and Mahad with some villages in one-two feet water. All the trains towards Pune have been stopped near Karjat and at least 70 villages have been cut off. Kolhapur itself has recorded 1,266 mm rain overnight.

Meanwhile, the flood situation in Andhra Pradesh continued to be grim on Sunday with continuous rains claiming as many as 53 lives over the past five days. Weather officials have predicted more showers.

Heavy rains and flash floods since Tuesday caused widespread devastation in Hyderabad and eight other districts in coastal Andhra and the Telangana region. Around 40 people have died since Friday and hundreds have been rendered homeless.

More than 50 residential colonies in Hyderabad and dozens of villages in the eight districts remain under water as several rivulets and water tanks were either overflowing or have breached.

Normal life came to a grinding halt in the affected districts. With some roads under water, vehicular traffic between major towns remained paralysed. Hundreds of vehicles were stranded on the Hyderabad-Vijayawada and the Bhadrachalam-Vijayawada roads.

The Visakhapatnam Cyclone Warning Centre said that heavy rains were likely in north coastal Andhra and Telangana. The low pressure area over Bay of Bengal turned into a well marked depression and lay centred close to the Orissa coast.

Some places are likely to receive more than 25 cm of rainfall. During the last two days, places like Hyderabad received over 15 cm rainfall.

Authorities have warned people living in low-lying areas to move to safer places while fishermen were advised not to venture out to the sea.

Officials have termed the situation "quite serious" after the Kapra dam in Guntur district breached, threatening low-lying areas.

The water level in Vamsadhara and Nagavali rivers in Srikakulam district in north coastal Andhra has been rising alarmingly due to heavy inflows from neighbouring Orissa.

The floods have damaged several houses and crops over thousands of acres. Minister for Revenue and Relief Dharmana Prasad Rao said that assessing the loses incurred would take time as the rains were still continuing.

Hyderabad bore the brunt of the natural calamity with 14 people losing their lives, mostly in house collapses. As many as 52 residential areas in and around the state capital were inundated as 20 tanks and several major storm water drains overflowed.

Boats were pressed into service in the city on Saturday to rescue people from marooned areas.

Although the rains receded since Saturday night, hundreds of houses remained under water. The water level in the Hussain Sagar in the heart of the city rose alarmingly due to heavy inflows.

The level in the 400-year-old old lake, which has a capacity of up to 515 feet, has crossed 513 feet.

(With inputs from IANS)

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