A heavy and continuous spell of rain has affected normal life in large parts of Karnataka, leading to schools, colleges, and anganwadi centres being closed in several places.
The Bengaluru Urban district administration declared a holiday for schools and pre-university colleges on Monday, 29 August.
Educational institutions in the districts of Koppal, Gadag, Mysuru and Ramanagara were ordered to shut down on Tuesday.
According to meteorological data, Bengaluru city received 93.7 mm of rain on Tuesday.
Highways, towns inundated
Vehicular movement came to a halt on the Bengaluru-Mysuru highway after parts of it were submerged, leading to huge traffic snarls and the diversion of vehicles.
The Karnataka State Road Transport Corporation (KSRTC) announced that Bengaluru-Mysuru buses were being diverted via the Harohalli- Kanakapura-Halagur-Malavalli-Mysuru route due to heavy rain in places like Ramanagara, Channapatna, and Kanakapura.
Former chief minister and local MLA HD Kumaraswamy visited the inundated highway in Ramanagara to review the situation.
He also discussed the situation with district officials on the immediate measure required to keep the traffic moving.
Chamarajnagar District Collector Charulata Somal told South First: “The district has witnessed heavy and continuous rain for two days. Making safety a priority, schools, colleges, and anganwadi centres were closed on 29 August.”
According to Somal, Chamarajanagar on 29 August received 32mm of rain, against the normal of 2mm. It has witnessed 300 percent excess rain so far.
The Ramanagara DC’s office said schools and colleges would remain closed for two days. The movement of trains was affected as water inundated railway stations in Ramanagara and Channapatna.
Ramanagara recorded 35mm rainfall against the normal of 3mm. As a result of the heavy rain and floods, the district witnessed two deaths till 29 August.
The towns of Ramanagara and Bolappanakere were inundated after the Bakshi lake breached its banks.
Chief Minister Basavaraj Bommain also visited Ramanagara district to take stock of the situation.
The state’s Revenue Department said that, in the last few days, three people died, while 3,000 people and 20 villages were affected. Seven relief camps have been set up and 875 people evacuated to them.
It also said that 181 houses were partially damaged and 70 small animals were reported dead in the last 24 hours.
The Central Water Commission said the Arkavathi river in the Bengaluru Rural district and the Suvarnavathi in Chamarajanagar are flowing close to their danger marks. The situation was similar at the Shimsha river in Mandya.
The Bengaluru office of the India Meteorological Department (IMD) on Tuesday issued a yellow alert for 24 districts of the state: Kalaburagi, Vijayapura, Belagavi, Gadag, Dharwad, Uttara Kannada, Davangere, Haveri, Shivamogga, Chikkamagalur, Chitradurga, Hassan, Tumakuru, Ramanagara, Bengaluru Urban, Bengaluru Rural, Kolar, Mandya, Chamarajanagar, Mysuru, Kodagu, Dakshina Kannada, and Udupi.
The IMD has warned of heavy rainfall for the next three days — from 31 August to 2 September.
Grievances of citizens
People across Karnataka took to Twitter to air grievances after the heavy rainfall.
One individual shared a video where many citizens were seen trapped in severe rains in Tumakuru. The National Disaster Response Force (NDRF) rescued them amid heavy flooding using boats.
— Vimarsha HS (@go2vim) August 29, 2022
Another user tweeted disparagingly about the engineers who built the state’s roads: “Passengers being rescued from a bus that broke down on the flooded Bengaluru-Mysuru national highway. Did the highway designers overlook something? [sic]”
— Rakesh Prakash (@rakeshprakash1) August 29, 2022
Other Twitter users also slammed the design of the highway as well as Pratap Simha, who represents the Mysuru Lok Sabha constituency.
One tweet said: “Flood is an act of god, inevitable. But, underpasses buried under 5 feet of water clearly indicate major faults in construction. Especially when this is one of the costliest roads (cost/KM) in the whole country, as claimed by MP Pratap Simha. [sic]”
₹9,000 crores gone in drain?@NHAI_Official: did it ever occur to you while planning, that it might actually rain in the future?
— Voice of Mysuru | ವಾಯ್ಸ್ ಆಫ್ ಮೈಸೂರು (@voiceofmysuru) August 29, 2022