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Orissa floods: Intermittent rain hinders relief operation

September 15, 2011 17:01 IST

Rains hindered air dropping of food and relief operations for the second day on Thursday, as over 1,250 villages remained marooned in the flood-affected Mahanadi delta in Orissa.

Intermittent rains disrupted operations in coastal areas of Jagatsinghpur, Puri, Kendrapara, Cuttack, Jajpur and Khurda districts, official sources said. The floods have claimed 20 lives so far.

Though floodwaters in the Mahanadi river system receded, the current was strong in several areas preventing boats from ferrying relief teams and materials to many marooned villages, they said. Air dropping of food by helicopters was also hampered in many places due to bad weather, they said.

The plight of affected sheltering in the open, on river embankments, highways and high places was compounded by fresh rains triggered by a low pressure, the sources said.

Shortage of polythene sheets added to their misery as the met centre forecast rain and thundershower in most coastal areas till Friday.

Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik has reviewed the situation and asked officials to start repairing breaches. While sending a report to the prime minister's office on the flood situation on Wednesday, the Orissa government has requested the Centre to send an inter-ministerial team to access the damage caused due to the calamity.

Instruction has been issued for repair of breaches on a war footing with around Rs 490 crore with the state in the calamity relief fund, the sources said.

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