Orissa flood toll 20

September 14th, 2011 - 12:48 am ICT by IANS  

Bhubaneswar, Sep 13 (IANS) The death toll from floods that have so far affected more than two million people in Orissa over the past week rose to 20 Tuesday, officials said.

Out of the latest deaths, two were reported from the coastal district of Kendrapada and one from Jajpur district, an official of the state flood control room told IANS. “They drowned in the flood waters,” he said.

Nine people were swept away or drowned in flood waters in different places but their bodies have not yet been found, he said.

The floods triggered by heavy rains and release of excess water from Hirakud dam have so far affected 3,505 villages in 19 of the 30 districts. At least 24,429 houses have been damaged.

The authorities have deputed hundreds of health officials and doctors to areas where water has receded as they fear an outbreak of water-borne diseases, he said.

Four helicopters continued air-dropping food packets in the worst-hit districts of Puri, Jagatsinghpur, Kendrapada, Cuttack, Boudh and Nayagarh, where many villages were flooded.

The control room official said 1,109 villages continued to be marooned and efforts were on to provide them food packets and other essentials from choppers. About 945 boats have been deployed to rescue and relief operation.

The official said the situation is likely to improve as the rain has stopped and the flood waters were receding fast. Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik reviewed the situation in a meeting here and said efforts were on to reach the victims in trouble.

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