New Delhi, July 13 (BNA): The Indian capital, New Delhi, today, Wednesday, began evacuating hundreds of residents due to the risk of flooding, as record rainfall swelled water levels in a river passing through the city.
Prime Minister Arvind Kejriwal said the Yamuna river had already risen above the “danger mark” and flooded some nearby areas in the capital of 20 million people, adding that water levels had risen to the highest level in 45 years.
On Wednesday, people living in temporary homes by the river put their belongings on bicycles and tractors and moved to some of the 2,500 relief camps set up in the city.
“The water level is continuing to rise and there is a flood-like situation at the moment … and it is likely to rise further,” Kejriwal told reporters when asking those living near the river to evacuate.
The people who lived on the banks of the Yamuna waded along the flooded lanes, with pets on their shoulders and pots and pans in their hands, and climbed a ladder to reach the top of the bridge as the water level swelled.
The India Meteorological Department (IMD) said states near Delhi saw record rainfall so far in this monsoon season that started on June 1, with Punjab and Himachal Pradesh recording 100% more rain and 70% more than average over respectively.
The news agency ANI reported that at least 88 people have died in Himachal Pradesh since the rains began on June 24. Flash floods in the state over the weekend caused a bridge to collapse and several groups of residential huts were swept away.
Delhi has also recorded 112% above-average rainfall so far, according to IMD.
A government statement said that barriers have been put up in the residential civil lines area, where some ministers including Kejriwal live, to prevent rising river waters from flooding the streets.
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