New Delhi/Dhaka, May 23 (EFE).- At least 74 people died and millions have been affected by heavy rains that have lashed northern and eastern India and neighboring Bangladesh for over a week, while rescue teams continue to evacuate people at risk from flooding.
In the northeastern Indian state of Arunachal Pradesh, at least 8 people have died since the heavy rains began 10 days ago, Papang Dnggong, Assistant Director of the region’s State Disaster Management Authority, told EFE on Monday.
Meanwhile, the State Disaster Management Authority of the northeastern state of Assam (ASDMA) reported 23 deaths – six of them in its latest bulletin – since mid-May, when the rains became severe.
Moreover, ASDA reported that nearly 800,000 people and 270,000 animals have been affected by rainfall in more than 2,000 settlements across 22 districts of Assam, where more than 420 shelters and aid distribution centers have been set up.
Another 33 people lost their lives across 16 districts in the eastern state of Bihar due to lightning strikes, state’s Chief Minister Nitish Kumar said on social media Friday.
India Meteorological Department issued a thunderstorm warning for the next 24 hours in at least five regions of northern India, apart from New Delhi, where a storm accompanied by strong winds and torrential rains left numerous localities flooded and trees uprooted early Monday.
In the neighboring country of Bangladesh, heavy rains in recent days have left at least 10 people dead and led to the evacuation of 10,000 others to shelters, Moshharraf Hossain, administrative head of the town of Sylhet – among the areas most affected by the floods -, told EFE on Monday.
The official estimated that about two million people have been affected by heavy rainfall, and noted that although “the flood situation is now improving slowly,” two of the country’s main rivers, Surma and Kushiyara, were “still above the hazard level.”
Heavy rains and thunderstorms are common in South Asia during the monsoon season – between May and September -, during which they cause hundreds of deaths and affect millions in the region every year. EFE