TIMES NOW, AUGUST 8, 2006
Vadodara is overflowing, and the city’s residents are battling to stay afloat. Similar scenes are being played out in other parts of the state – be it Surat or Gandhinagar, all is submerged.
“It has been raining since yesterday. Our houses have been inundated and all the household furniture has been spoilt. If it is going to be like this after only a day’s rain, I shudder to imagine what will happen if it rains for two days,” said Vishwa, standing in ankle deep water inside his home in Vadodara.
In the middle of it, a hapless Chief Minister seems to be finding it difficult to get things under control.
“We have alerted the Army, and it is on its way. I appeal to the people to cooperate with the administration and follow any instructions for evacuation,” said Narendra Modi.
IAF helicopters and the National disaster response force are on standby in Vadodara and Surat. But the situation is only worsening. Around 99 dams in the state are flowing above danger levels – the Sardar Sarovar dam on the Narmada is overflowing by 8.5 metres.
Incessant rains have forced over 50,000 thousand people to vacate their homes and shift to relief camps in south Gujarat. In an unprecedented move, 10 lakh cusecs (cubic metres per second) of water has been released from the Ukai dam, affecting at least 75 villages and displacing as many as 20,000 people. The worst affected areas include Vadodara, Bharuch, Surat, Navsari and Valsad.
Meanwhile the Meteorological Department has predicted more rains in the state in the next 48 hours.