The Odisha government on Thursday issued a fresh flood alert in the wake of cyclone 'Komen' which is expected to worsen the flood situation in five districts where three persons have died and about 4 lakh people have been affected.
"Keeping the possible impact of cyclone Komen in mind, the district collectors have been directed to remain alert to meet any eventuality," Special Relief Commissioner (SRC) G V V Sarma said.
Quoting the IMD forecast, Sarma said the northern districts of Odisha are expected to experience heavy rainfall under the influence of Komen in the next 2-3 days.
Sarma said that bodies of all three persons killed in the flood were retrieved by personnel of the Odisha Disaster Rapid Action Force.
He, however, said that there had been a slight improvement in the flood situation with no major rainfall occurring as the water level in the three rivers Subarnarekha, Budhabalang and Baitarani was receding fast.
Replying to a question, the SRC said of the 358 villages under 11 Blocks and one ULB in five districts like Mayurbhanj,Keonjhar, Jajpur, Bhardak and Balasore, about 60 villages continued to remain marooned for the second consecutive day today. He said 3.93 lakh people have been affected by the current spell of flood.
Asked about the breaches on river embankments, Sarma said two breaches occurred on the Baitarani - one in Jajpur district and the other in Bhadrak district. Breaches also formed on the Subarnarekha in Balasore district and the Kani in Jajpur district.
"The officials have been working day and night to repair the breaches in river embankments," Sarma said.
Most of the people evacuated on Wednesday have returned to their homes, except 250 persons residing in a relief camp in Balasore district, he said, adding 158 quintals of flattened rice and 15.6 quintals of molasses were distributed among the affected people in the districts of Balasore and Mayurbhanj.
Vast crop areas have been inundated and a number of private houses damaged due to floods, he said, adding that five ODRAF units and one NDRF unit were deployed in the affected districts.
The situation in Keonjhar and Mayurbhanj districts is almost normal, he said.