Worst flood in 100 years; Kurnool devastated
Half the city under water; Mahabubnagar ravaged; thousands wait for help; rail, road services paralysed
Unparalleled: Mosques flooded at Roza in Kurnool city on Friday. (Right) Students of Veltoor village in Uppununthala mandal who were stranded on Thursday night in Dundubhi rivulet rescued on Friday.
KURNOOL: Tungabhadra river ran amok on Friday letting loose a huge deluge of water that engulfed Kurnool city and 100 other villages, some of which were virtually wiped off the map as they were submerged under a sheet of water.
By evening, thousands of people in the city were seen shouting for help from the roof-tops where they were perched after the flood water entered their houses. Kurnool city bore the flood fury with half of its area being affected.
Hundreds of people, who were initially reluctant to leave their houses, were forced to shift to the roof tops. Soon the surging water engulfed residential localities trapping people in their houses. The river stretched its arms one kilometre on either side from the banks stretching to a width of three km.
Utter chaos ruled the city by 4 p.m. when the river water started flowing in most of the city areas. According to an estimate, 20 lakh people in Kurnool and Mahabubnagar districts were affected by the unprecedented flood, considered the most furious in the last 100 years. At Gundrevula village under C. Belagal mandal, 400 people were trapped on the terrace of a few buildings and were crying for help. The victims made a sustained bid throughout the day to draw the attention of the authorities and even the government in Hyderabad, but no help reached them. Thousands of victims like those trapped at Gundrevula fended for themselves.
The administration was found in a helpless state with calls for help flooding its control room. The rescue teams deployed in the city were no match for the frantic calls.
Hyderabad Special Correspondent adds: Rail and road traffic from Hyderabad to the four Rayalaseema districts and neighbouring Karnataka was thrown out of gear following unparalleled floods in Krishna and Tungabhadra rivers in Kurnool and Mahabubnagar districts.
Overflowing streams and rivulets on NH-7 between Hyderabad and Kurnool brought vehicular traffic to a standstill near Beechupally near Pebbair where thousands of vehicles were stranded over a distance of 30 km. Drivers who left the State Capital were caught unawares on the four-lane NH-7 as numerous streams and rivulets flowed across the road.
Buses, trains cancelled
The RTC cancelled nearly 600 bus services plying between Hyderabad and the Rayalaseema districts besides Srisailam and Raichur on Friday. The South Central Railway said that as water was flowing over two bridges between Guntakal and Wadi (near Mantralayam and Raichur) in the Guntakal division and Tungabhadra bridge between Alampur and Kurnool town in Hyderabad division several trains were cancelled, diverted and regulated.
In all, 33 long-distance express trains were diverted following the floods. Help desks were opened at Secunderabad (040-27821430, 9701370084), Raichur (09900212792, 9243610702, 9243610704), Guntakal (9247025838, 9247025846) and Mantralayam (9603652171).
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