Udupi: Heavy rains and gusty winds lashed Karnataka's temple town Udupi, flooding low-lying areas and disrupting normal life, an official said on Sunday.
"With the southwest monsoon remaining active in the coastal and southern regions of the state, heavy rains have been lashing Udupi, Dakshina Kannada and Kodagu districts since Saturday," a state disaster management authority official told IANS.
Udupi, about 400km west of Bengaluru in the southern state, is popular for the 13th century Krishna temple
The India Meteorological Department (IMD) issued a red alert in coastal and Malnad districts till Tuesday, warning heavy to very heavy rainfall and strong winds in the regions due to depression in the Arabian Sea and active monsoon clouds.
"Torrential rains since morning wreaked havoc in the three coastal districts, causing flash floods in many towns and villages, disrupting vehicular traffic as roads and bridges were submerged and damaging power lines," said the official.
Hundreds of people in the Udupi district were marooned as rainwater flooded several low-lying areas and tanks breached in many villages.
State Chief Minister B.S. Yediyurappa directed Udupi Deputy Commissioner G. Jagadeesha to launch rescue and relief operations to save the stranded people from flood-hit areas.
Udupi-Chikkamagalur Lok Sabha member Shobha Karandlaje urged the district administration to arrange 2 helicopters from the Naval base at Karwar for rescue operations in the island areas and marooned villages.
"Two National Disaster Response Force (NDRF) teams have been rushed to Udupi for rescue and relief operations," the official said.
Heavy rainfall in the Western Ghats has turned several rivers into spate overflowing roads and bridges in the three coastal districts.
Heavy rainfall and huge inflows into the Kabini reservoir at HD Kote in Mysyru district forced the authorities to release 35,000 cusecs of water from the dam into the Kabini and Cauvery river earlier in the day.
"A flood alert has been sounded to the people living in the downstream villages and advised them to shift to safer places from the river banks and low-lying areas.
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