Crocodiles of VadodaraTechnological advancement, business expansion or political upheaval, Vadodara, or popularly known as Baroda, has been in news various times. However the special news was made when the floods compelled to walk on roads. Baffled? Walking can never make news but if the walk is comprised of reptiles like the crocodiles over the Vadodara roads, special news has to be published.
The reptiles actually made it to the headlines of leading newspapers in Vadodara during the rescue operations within the flooded areas of Baroda. The heavy monsoons this year (2014) has lead to many disasters in the country. The heavy rainfall had caused the river Vishwamitra to swell and gush into the residential areas of the city. The situation was so grim that rescue operations had to be conducted to relieve the stranded people from the affected areas. The residents on Sama-Savli road were the worst affected. A rescue operation had to be carried by the fire-brigade team in the wee hours of early morning.
The city of Vadodara has been declared to be the only city which has a river flowing through the heart infested with crocodile. Generally urban people are less aware of the ways and methods to tackle wild animals and reptiles. Though many propositions have been put forward to educate people on tackling wild animals, not much has been seen in practicality. However, the flood of 2014 again has raised the issue and a recurrence of the infestation by crocodiles, in 2005 flood in Baroda, was witnessed.
When the rescue workers reached the affected area, the flood water was not only their adversary. It was first spotted by the fire brigade officer Om Jadeja. He told the media that while they were rescuing people from the colony on Savli road, crocodiles were swimming near the boats to catch their preys. The rescue operation thus became a major risk with reptiles trying to jeopardize lives of both rescuers and the stranded.
The fire brigade team had a tough time especially when they could not let people step in water yet not tell them the reason in anticipation of panic. A panic situation could have worsened the whole operation and people would have been killed or stampeded. However, with utmost caution the rescue work was carried out successfully bringing a peaceful end to the risky operation.
Apart from the fire brigade team the residents of Siddharth Bungalows also spotted crocodiles that swept in with the floods to the residential area of Vadodara city. Though being harassed by the sudden gush of water inside the house, the residents did not dare to step into the water. They have also witnessed water snakes near their houses.
It is estimated that about six crocodiles out of the 204 surviving in Vishwamitri River has swept in to the roads of the residential areas in Vadodara. The forest department has ensured the other residents in the city about their safety. Except for these six crocodiles in Savli road no other such infestation has been witnessed.