‘Relief cut’ on Manchhar dyke aggravates flooding in five Sindh UCs

DADU: The ‘relief cut’ given on Sunday to Manchhar Lake embankment in order to save densely populated cities and towns, including Sehwan and Bhan Syedabad, aggravated flooding in over 100 villages in five union councils’ areas, reports reaching here till Monday evening suggested.

The affected UCs are Jafferabad, Bubak, Wahur, Channa and Arazi.

The cut was given to the dyke between RD 14 and 15 (Bagh-i-Yousuf) to ease the immense pressure of floodwater that had increased the lake’s level to 124.3 RL, crossing the danger level of 122RL.

Army personnel have rushed to Sehwan and started rescue and relief operation.

Evacuation from over 100 villages continues, 300 boats employed to transport marooned people

The troops are closely monitoring the situation in the area, where the roads leading to the airport and a Parco oil installation were submerged in floodwater. They are using all available means to bring people, marooned in flooded UCs, to safe areas within the city. Floodwater had reached eight kilometres from Bhan Syedabad town but was not expected to pose any major threat to local population.

According to Jamshoro Deputy Comm­issioner retired Captain Fariduddin Mustafa, 30 boats were being used to evacuate people stranded in their flooded villages. The provincial government has reportedly started a transport service to move rescued people from vulnerable areas to relief camps.

An engineer in the irrigation department, Mahesh Kumar, told this reporter that the deluge gushing out of the ‘relief cut’ had hit Bubak, Dal, Wahur, Pakka Channa and Arazi UCs with full force.

Read: How current calamity compares to 2010 floods

MNA Sardar Sikandar Ali Rahpoto said that tent cities had been established in Sehwan for internally displaced people (IDPs).

He said that floodwater would be restricted to a vast area between Indus link canal and LS bund, away from Sehwan.

Meanwhile, exodus of families from the five affected UCs was continuing. It was estimated that almost half of the around 25,000 population of Bubak, located just one kilometer from Manchhar Lake, had already moved out of the town after the area submerged under three-foot floodwater along with its approach roads from Manchhar, Sehwan and Bhan Syedabad.

A resident of the town, Shahid Ali Panhyar, said that the highest peak within the town was also surrounded by water from all sides.

Sikandar Ali Chhutto, a resident of Arazi town, told this reporter that one-third of around 30,000 population of this town had migrated to some safe places so far. The rest were waiting for transport means, preferably boats, he added.

Wahur, the native town of Chief Minister Syed Murad Ali Shah, also received a deluge following the ‘relief cut’ given to the Manchhar dyke with his permission. Vast farmlands and many houses were inundated.

Another area badly hit was Tando Shahbazi village, located along the Indus Highway.

Families in a large number were seen leaving their villages in Jaffarabad union council for Sehwan.

Published in Dawn, September 6th, 2022

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