Jammu: Cloudbursts in the upper reaches of Kishtwar district on Wednesday damaged wooden bridges, water flour mills and agricultural land although there was no report of loss of any life.
“Cloudburst has been reported from the upper reaches of Saplota Cheer and Kibber Nallah in Dachhan in Kishtwar district,” Deputy Commissioner, Kishtwar, Ashok Kumar Sharma told Greater Kashmir.
“No loss of life has been reported in the cloudburst. However, the water level in Kibber nallah, Tander and Cheerji had increased which gradually started receding,” Sharma said.
In view of the inclement weather conditions and flooded rivers, nallahs, Sharma said that they have advised people not to venture out near nallahs and Chenab.
“We have reports about the washing away of low lying wooden bridges and water flour mills along the nallahs,” Sharma said.
Meanwhile, DDC Chairperson, Kishtwar, Pooja Thakur told Greater Kashmir that at around 3 pm , a cloud burst took place in Kibber nallah in Dacchan area due to which properties were damaged. “However, there was no life lost. Due to the cloudburst, two wooden bridges and flour mills in Kibber nallah were damaged,” Thakur said.
In Lahorana village, Thakur said that a recently constructed steel bridge and two water flour mills got damaged whereas a customer (woman) at one of the flour mills was rescued by the local police following a massive flash flood in the nallah.
“I would appeal to the administration that they should prepare in advance to deal with cloud bursts, flash flood like situation in Nallahs in Warwan, Marwah, Bonjwan, Dacchan, Padder and other hilly places in Kishtwar,” Thakur added.
She said Hunzar cloudburst in Dacchan (last year) consumed many lives and residential houses were damaged.
“However, 10 to 15 families in Hunzar are still facing problems due to rising water levels in the nallah following heavy rainfalls and accordingly, the administration should speed up relief work,” Thakur added.
Besides, ex-sarpanch, Amar Singh from Gulab Garh areas, said that, “Cloud bursts happened in dhoks (grazing lands) on the snowbound mountains. Immediately after the cloudburst, Dasni and Massu nallahs were flooded with flash flood posing a serious threat to the low lying areas, agricultural lands and villages along the nallah.
As the threat to their lives increased, he said that the administration asked the people (around 70 families) to move to safer places from Massu (panchayat) - located alongside the flooded nallah. “Locals helped the trapped people with wooden logs to escape the flooded areas,” he said. He added that, “the water level had increased in the afternoon following a cloudburst, but it started receding gradually by evening. However, we are still away from our houses due to the threat of flash floods.”
Last year, a cloudburst occurred on July 28 at Hunzar hamlet in the Dachhan area of the Kishtwar district in which 26 lost their lives and 17 others wounded whereas 21 families had lost their residential houses.