Yamuna water level shoots up: The water level of the Yamuna river breached the danger mark of 205.33 metres in Delhi following heavy rain in upper catchment areas, prompting authorities to evacuate people from low-lying areas.
The Delhi flood control room said the water level reached 205.78 metres at 9 pm on Friday. It was 205.38 metres at 4 pm and 205.29 metres at 3 pm.
The Yamuna is expected to swell further and the water level is likely to rise to 206.5 metres by 6 am on Saturday, it said. East Delhi District Magistrate Anil Banka said around 2,300 people have been evacuated from low-lying areas in his district and shifted to safer places. Evacuation efforts will be intensified on Saturday, he said.
A flood alert is declared in Delhi when the discharge rate from the Hathnikund Barrage in Haryana's Yamuna Nagar crosses the 1 lakh-cusecs mark. People living near the floodplains and in flood-prone areas are evacuated then, an official said.
The flood control department on Thursday advised all sector officers to keep a vigil in their respective areas and take necessary action at vulnerable points by deploying the requisite number of quick-reaction teams to warn people residing within river embankments.
Thirty-four boats and mobile pumps have been deployed in anticipation of floods in low-lying areas.
"Around 37,000 people who live in Yamuna floodplains and low-lying areas in Delhi are considered vulnerable to flooding. We have shared a flood control plan with all departments concerned," Banka said.
"We have started evacuating people. Around 2,300 people have been shifted to safer places. The evacuation efforts will be intensified on Saturday as the water level is predicted to cross the 206-metre mark," he said.
These people are being shifted to temporary structures like tents and permanent buildings like schools in safer areas, Banka said. The Delhi flood control room reported a discharge rate of around 2.21 lakh cusecs from the Hathnikund Barrage at 3 pm on Thursday and 1.55 lakh cusecs at midnight. It was 97,460 cusecs at 6 am.
One cusec is equivalent to 28.32 litres per second. Normally, the flow rate at the Hathnikund barrage is 352 cusecs, but the discharge increases after heavy rainfall in the catchment areas. The water discharged from the barrage normally takes two to three days to reach the national capital.
According to the India Meteorological Department, heavy to very heavy rainfall occurred at a few places in Uttarakhand and Himachal Pradesh on Wednesday.
"Widespread rainfall with isolated heavy rain is likely in Himachal Pradesh, Uttarakhand and Haryana on August 14 and 15," it said.
Last year, the Yamuna river breached the danger mark on July 30 and the water level at the Old Railway Bridge had risen to 205.59 metres. In 2019, the flow rate had peaked at 8.28 lakh cusec on August 18-19, and the water level of the Yamuna had hit the 206.60-metre mark.
The Delhi government had to launch evacuation and relief operations after the overflowing river submerged many low-lying areas. In 1978, the river had swelled to the all-time record water level of 207.49 metres. In 2013, it had risen to 207.32 metres.