M A I N   N E W S

Gujarat flood kills 94; 500 cr aid announced

Ahmedabad, July 1
The Centre today announced Rs 500 crore assistance to the Gujarat Government to meet the flood situation which has left at least 94 persons dead and caused immense losses to the state’s infrastructure.

About 2 lakh persons had to be evacuated to safer places, as floods inundated scores of villages. The worst-affected districts are Vadodara, Anand and Kheda where more than 1 lakh persons have been displaced, Revenue Minister Kaushik Patel said.

Union Home Minister Shivraj Patil had rushed to Gujarat to review the flood situation. He was accompanied by two ministerial colleagues from the state, Mr Shankersinh Vaghela and Mr Narain Rathwa. He held a meeting with Chief Minister Narendra Modi and took stock of the situation.

“Money is no criterion. Whatever the Gujarat government demands, we will give. Now our first priority is to see that rescue and relief operation go on smoothly,” he said, announcing the Central aid.

Power supply to at least 31 towns and 4,547 villages have been disrupted, with the breaking down of 1,460 feeders and 667 transformers, he said.

Four columns of the Army have been deployed in Vadodara, and one each in Anand and Kheda. Five IAF helicopters have distributed about 1.5 lakh food packets and one lakh water bottles and pouches.

Mr Modi who made an aerial survey of the affected areas, said about 2.5 crore people and 70 per cent of the geographical area of Gujarat, had been ravaged by the rains.

Meanwhile, two Air Force helicopters have been pressed into service to airlift passengers of the Gandhinagar-bound Shanti Express train (9310) stranded in Dakor, about 90 km from here.

The train coming from Indore, has not been able to move since last evening as the tracks have been inundated. Nearly 400 passengers are on board.

Indian Petrochemicals Corporation Ltd and Indian Oil Corporation’s Gujarat Refinery are among the several plants that have been shut down a report from Vadodara said. — UNI, PTI



Mumbai Rajdhani cancelled
Tribune News Service

New Delhi, July 1
The 2952 Mumbai Rajdhani and the 2954 August Kranti Express from New Delhi station and Hazrat Nizamuddin station, respectively were cancelled here due to diversion caused by floods in Gujarat.

Sources in Northern Railway told The Tribune today that the 2951 Mumbai Rajdhani and 2953 August Kranti Express that left Mumbai Central yesterday did not reach Delhi at the scheduled time at 9 am and 10.15 am, respectively. The trains leave New Delhi and Hazrat Nizamuddin stations at 4.30 pm and 5 pm, respectively.

The Chief Public Relations Officer of Northern Railway, Mr Rajiv Saksena, said, "These trains are running late indefinitely and their diverted route is via Jalgaon, Ittarasi, Bhopal, Jhansi and Agra. Besides, several trains have been inordinately delayed. These are the 2471 Mumbai Central-Jammu Tawi Swarg Express, 9023 Bandra Terminus-Ferozepore Janata Express, 2925 Mumbai Central- Amritsar-Kalka Paschim Express and the 2903 Mumbai Central- Amritsar Golden Temple Mail. The 9040 Bandra Terminus- Muzaffarpur Awadh Express has also been diverted to run via Jalgaon, Ittarasi, Bhopal, Jhansi and Agra.''


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