India – Thousands Stranded in Madhya Pradesh After Rivers Reach Record Highs

Air Force, Army and Disaster Response Forces have rescued thousands of people stranded by flooding in the state of Madhya Pradesh, India.

Floods in Madhya Pradesh, India, 02 August 2021. Photo: Indian Air Force

Shivraj Singh Chouhan, Chief Minister of Madhya Pradesh described the flood situation as grim. He said in a statement of 04 August that flooding has affected 1,225 villages in Shivpuri, Sheopur, Datia, Gwalior, Guna, Bhind and Morena districts.

Bridges and roads have been wiped out and teams from Air Force, Army and National and State Disaster Response Forces have been deployed across affected areas to help rescue victims marooned or trapped in flooded areas. The Chief Minister said about 5,950 people have been moved safely, with a further 1,400 still requiring rescue.

Flooding and rainfall has damaged mobile telephone and power infrastructure, and the Gwalior-Guna railway track, which has been closed.

Local media say there are unconfirmed reports of fatalities in the districts of Morena (1 fatality), Sheopur (1) and Shivpuri (1).

Heavy rainfall has caused several rivers to break their banks. According to media reports, quoting figures from the India Meteorological Department (IMD) from late 02 August to early 03 August, 470 mm of rain fell in Guna, 270 mm in Sheopur and 215 mm in Ashoknagar and 180 mm in Vidisha.

The situation was complicated further by the need to release water water from the Manikheda dam in Shivpuri and Harsi dam in Gwalior district.

The Sind River in Datia District has reached record levels. As of 04 August, it stood at 143.5 metres, beating the previous high of 141.73 metres set in 1971, according to India’s Central Water Commission.

Prime minister, Narendra Modi, said, “The Central Government is working closely with the Madhya Pradesh Government to assist those affected by heavy rainfall and flooding in parts of the state. I have spoken to Shivraj Singh Chouhan, Chief Minister of Madhya Pradesh, and reviewed the situation. I pray for everyone’s safety and well-being.”

Floods in Madhya Pradesh, India, 02 August 2021. Photo: Indian Air Force

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