Yamuna water level recedes briefly as Delhi govt continues evacuation drive

The water level on the Yamuna river in the national capital receded slightly but was still above the warning mark of 204.5 metres, officials said on Thursday

Yamuna floodplains

Normally, the flow rate at the Hathnikund barrage is 352 cusecs, but the discharge increases after heavy rainfall in the catchment areas. (Photo: Unsplash)

The Delhi government’s flood control room said the water level on the river decreased from 204.89 metres at 7 am on Wednesday to 204.66 metres at 8 am on Thursday.

The Central Water Commission forecast said the water level is expected to drop to 204.5 metres by 5 pm.

The river had breached the danger mark of 205.33 metres on Friday last, prompting authorities to evacuate around 7,000 people from low-lying areas. The water level had receded below the warning mark on Monday and stood at 203.96 metres at 6 pm on Tuesday.

When Haryana released more water from the Hathnikund barrage on Tuesday night amid rain in the upper catchment areas, it once more exceeded the alert threshold.

More rain is expected in the river’s upper catchment areas, so officials say they are closely monitoring the situation.

There are high chances that Himachal Pradesh and Uttarakhand would have widespread rainfall “with isolated heavy falls” throughout the course of the next two to three days, according to the India Meteorological Department (IMD).

The catchment of the Yamuna river system includes areas of Uttar Pradesh, Uttarakhand, Himachal Pradesh, Haryana, Rajasthan, Madhya Pradesh and Delhi.

An appeal was made by Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal last week for the public to avoid going near the banks of the river.

A flood alert is issued in the capital when the discharge rate from the Hathnikund barrage in Haryana’s Yamuna Nagar crosses the one lakh-cusecs mark and people inhabiting near the floodplains and in flood-prone areas are evacuated.

Last week saw the highest discharge rate of the year at 2.21 lakh cusecs at 3 pm on Thursday.

The flow rate, in general, at the Hathnikund barrage is 352 cusecs, but the discharge rises after heavy rainfall in the catchment areas. The water discharged from the barrage usually takes two to three days to reach the national capital.

The low-lying areas in Delhi near the river are deemed vulnerable to flooding. These areas house approximately 37,000 people.

(With inputs from PTI)

 

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