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Venkaiah Naidu surveys Guntur; people moved to safer areas in Vizag

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Visakhapatnam: Union Minister Venkaiah Naidu on Tuesday conducted an aerial survey of the flood-hit parts of Andhra Pradesh’s Guntur district.

He took off from Vijayawada on a helicopter and flew over several parts of the neighbouring district and inspected the damage caused to crops and railways tracks.

Later, the Urban Development and Parliamentary Affair minister spoke to officials in Guntur and learnt the details of losses in the recent heavy rains and flood.

Heavy rains and deluge in Guntur last week had disrupted rail and road transport with National Disaster Response Force being pressed into service for rescue and relief operation.

As many as five persons were killed at separate places in the district due to flood and downpour on September 22.

Meanwhile, in Visakhapatnam, nearly 10,000 families from rain-affected areas have been moved to safer places.

Low-lying areas in various villages and mandals of the district were inundated, including reservoirs Raiwada and Thandava, due to incessant rainfall in the last three days, Visakhapatnam Collector Pravin Kumar said today.

He said over 3,430 hectares of land in 101 villages across 33 mandals of the district were affected due to heavy rainfall and about 10,000 families were moved to safer places like Zilla Parashad and municipal schools.

Among the worst-hit areas were Balanagar and Relliveedi in Chodavram mandal, ASR colony in Yelamanchili and Geddapadu in S Rayavaram mandal.

No rain-related causalities were reported in the district in the last three days, officials at district Control Room told PTI.

According to latest reports, there were breaches to 14 check dams and 10 tanks reported and the authority concerned has sent officers from Integrated Tribal Development Agency, Panchayat Raj and Roads and buildings department to assess the situation and plug the breaches, Kumar said.

Among the other measures taken, he said administration was put on high alert and over 1,000 sandbags and cement bags were dispatched to the vulnerable areas such as Raiwada and Thandava downstream spots to plug breaches.

He said a 24X7 Command Control Centre was opened at the collectorate with a special team monitoring it under the direct supervision of district revenue officer.

Officers have been dispatched to all mandals and mini command control centres were opened in various areas to cater to four to five mandals with an idea to have a real time picture of the flood situation, he said.

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