Heavy rains caused by a deep depression over the Arabian Sea have left 70 people dead in Gujarat’s Saurashtra region and parts of South Gujarat since Wednesday. The depression has since moved towards Madhya Pradesh but the rains have stranded people in several parts of Saurashtra, particularly in Amreli where 400 of 619 villages have been affected.
“The deep depression has passed out of the state, and now it has converted into a low-mark pressure and is centred over Madhya Pradesh. It will weaken further in the next 24 hours,” PTI quoted State Meteorological Department director Jayanta Sarkar as saying.
Chief Minister Anandiben Patel, who did an aerial survey of Amreli district and Gondal in Rajkot, declared Rs 4 lakh as compensation to the kin of each of the deceased. Around 2 lakh food packets were distributed on Thursday, with some of these packets and water airdropped on 29 villages of Amreli.
Around 4,000 people were evacuated from 17 villages downstream of the Bhadar dam. Indian Air Force helicopters rescued over 100 people from various parts of Amreli, with four helicopters pressed into service. These included 48 from Amreli’s Gavadka village, including 23 passengers, the driver and the conductor of another state transport bus that had been swept away. From Jetpur town, 90 people were rescued by NDRF and the Rajkot fire brigade.