Flood-affected locals in Loni, Ghaziabad, appeal to the district administration for help.
Several villages, including Nauraspur, Alipur, Mirpur Hindu, Lutfullapur Nawada, Badarpur, Khanpur Japti, Harampur, Ilaichipur, and Pychara, along with four other villages in the Baghpat district, have been severely affected by floods caused by the overflowing Yamuna River in Ghaziabad’s Loni area. One villager, Meher Deen from Badarpur village, finds his mobile phone indispensable as it is his only means of communication with the outside world.
Badarpur village has been completely submerged, turning it into an isolated island like many other nearby villages. The Alipur embankment, the sole protection against the raging Yamuna, suffered a breach near Subhanpur, and repairs are yet to be carried out. The situation worsened on Friday, causing flooding in numerous villages across Ghaziabad’s Loni, the Tronica City industrial area, and nearby localities.
To maintain communication, Deen relies on his mobile phone, which he charges in a friend’s car. Whenever his phone needs charging, he calls his friend, who brings the vehicle to the embankment. Deen wades through the flooded water to reach the embankment and charge his phone. With no other means of connection, having a functional phone is crucial for him.
Deen mentioned that most people in his village have taken refuge on the first and second floors of their houses. Neighbours are providing shelter to those living in single-story houses. Many villagers have sought shelter on the embankment, taking their utensils and cattle with them. The absence of electricity for the past three days has forced them to rely on hand pumps for drinking water. The agricultural fields have also been ravaged by waterlogging, resulting in the loss of crops. They are awaiting assistance from the district administration and surviving on rotis (Indian bread) and chutney.
The list of flood-affected villages extends beyond Badarpur and includes Nauraspur, Alipur, Mirpur Hindu, Lutfullapur Nawada, Khanpur Japti, Harampur, Ilaichipur, Pychara, and four other villages in the Baghpat district. The Tronica City industrial area, with approximately 2,000 small-scale factories, has also been severely impacted. Many factories operating from basements and ground floors have suffered losses due to water seepage. Anil Kumar, the general secretary of the Tronica City Manufacturers’ Association, expressed dissatisfaction with the local administration’s response, stating that the failure to identify and repair the breach has had disastrous consequences.
Residents of areas such as Puja Colony and Khanna have also been affected by the floods. People can be seen wading through knee-deep water to obtain essential supplies. Many have evacuated to safer locations, and it is common to witness individuals navigating the floodwaters with their belongings.
Hari Ram Khari, a resident of Khanpur Japti, anticipated the potential problem and sent his wife and children to a relative’s house. He described the situation in his village as alarming, with many people constructing small mud structures to prevent water from entering their homes. Some villagers are using tractors to assist. The water level remains high, and Khari was unable to take his SUV home, so he stayed at his office.
The ongoing Kanwar Yatra has captured the attention of the district administration, diverting their focus from the pressing issue at hand—the devastating floods that have ravaged several villages in the Ghaziabad district, particularly Badarpur. As the Yamuna River overflowed, isolation and harsh conditions gripped the affected residents, prompting a desperate need for aid and support.
Despite the challenging circumstances, the district administration has taken certain measures to alleviate the suffering. Loni Nagar Palika has deployed drinking water tankers, ensuring a steady supply of clean water, while food packets are being distributed twice a day. To accommodate those displaced by the floods, tents have been erected on the embankment, providing shelter for approximately 500 people. Furthermore, buses have been arranged to transport individuals to the nearest Metro station, facilitating their journey to their relatives’ homes.
Recognising the magnitude of the disaster, the district administration has established six temporary facilities, each capable of accommodating 150–200 people. Regrettably, the villagers are displaying hesitancy in utilising these shelters, likely due to various reasons such as attachment to their homes or concerns about safety. Meanwhile, the cattle have been relocated to a secure cow shed (gaushala) to protect them from harm.
However, these efforts, though commendable, only scratch the surface of the enormous challenges faced by the affected communities. With an estimated 10,000–12,000 people impacted by the floods, immediate relief and long-term solutions are imperative. The district administration must continue its endeavours to provide comprehensive support, including the provision of shelter, food, and clean water. Collaborative efforts involving government agencies, local communities, and humanitarian organisations are crucial to ensuring the speedy recovery and rehabilitation of flood-affected areas.