Odisha Special Relief Commissioner-cum-Additional Chief Secretary Pradeep Jena on Thursday directed all the District collectors and Municipal Commissioners to make all necessary arrangement after the India Meteorological Department (IMD) warned of five days of heavy rains in the state.
In a letter to all the District collectors and Municipal Commissioners, Pradeep Jena said: “As predicted by IMD, under the influence of low pressure is likely to be formed over North Bay of Bengal and neighbourhood around June 11, 2021, widespread rainfall activity with isolated heavy to very heavy rainfall and extremely heavy rainfall very likely to occur over a large number of districts of Odisha during 10th to 14th June 2021.”
He said that during such intense and continued rainfall, flash flood/ flood-like situations may occur in different rivers, nullah and water bodies. In hilly areas, landslides may occur. Waterlogging may be experienced in different parts including urban/low-lying areas.
He further directed the administrations to take precautionary measures to prevent any damage to life and property during the period.
Suggesting the steps to the authorities Mr Jena said, “The control rooms of all the offices dealing with flood/disaster management must operate round the clock with adequate manpower. It must be under the charge of a responsible officer on a 24×7 basis.”
He further said that the field level functionaries to be in readiness to meet any eventuality including the possibility of landslides in hilly areas.
District administrations of landslide-prone districts are to take special precautionary measures to prevent damage and to make arrangement for evacuating people from vulnerable areas if required.
“All cyclone and flood shelters should be kept in readiness in all respect to evacuate people from in kutcha houses/hut and low-lying areas.”
He also said that the flood-fighting materials may be kept ready at strategic places and immediate action may be taken to prevent any breach or to close the breach, damage of roads if any.
Urban Local Bodies are also instructed to make advance arrangements for dewatering from the areas likely to face waterlogging.
Local Fire personnel may be instructed to be in readiness with boat and other equipment for search, rescue and relief operation, as and when required.
“Evacuating people during COVID-19 pandemic poses a great challenge. If evacuation is required, social distancing, use of masks covering mouth and nose may be ensured during evacuation and sheltering people,” he added.
Cooked food through the free kitchen, safe drinking water, lighting, health and sanitation facilities must be arranged for evacuated people housed in shelters.
“Necessary arrangement may be made to stock adequate foodstuff like rice, chuda, gud, etc. for the people affected due to possible flood,” he said.
Fishermen may be advised not to venture into the deep sea from June 11 to June 14. Whoever in the deep-sea area are advised to return to the coast by June 10 evening.
Pradeep Jena said that necessary steps may be taken to advise farmers for protecting their standing crops, Steps should be taken to provide temporary shelter materials (polythene sheet) to the households, whose houses will damage in flood/ heavy rain.
“Mobile health and veterinary teams may be organised in advance and kept in readiness for deployment in the affected areas. Adequate feed and fodder should be arranged for the animal population.”