Disasters & Accidents

More than 170 dead, millions affected by rains in India, Bangladesh

New Delhi/Dhaka, Jun 24 (EFE).- More than 170 people died and millions have been affected by heavy rains in recent weeks in several states in northeastern India and neighboring Bangladesh.

The northeastern states of Assam and Meghalaya were hit hardest by floods in India, with 98 deaths since heavy rainfall began on Tuesday last week.

In Assam, floods claimed the lives of 81 people, ten of them in the last 24 hours, and more than 4,300 homes were damaged or completely destroyed, according to the latest data from the Assam State Disaster Management Authority.

The situation has led thousands of people to seek refuge in shelters, while those who refused to leave their homes have been suffering from a lack of food, electricity and drinking water.

Most areas of town of Silchar in Assam – one of the most affected localities – was inundated, forcing its residents to build rafts to move or transport the few water bottles available for drinking, according to footage aired on local broadcaster NDTV.

Assam Chief Minister Himanta Biswa Sarma surveyed the affected areas by helicopter on Thursday, and told the media they were air dropping hundreds of thousands of bottles of water daily to the people as road access has been cut off.

Engineers and technicians are also being flown by helicopter to restore power, he added.

In the adjoining state of Meghalaya, the authorities have reported 18 deaths from floods and landslides, including a member of the rescue teams and several children.

In Bangladesh, the number of deaths from floods in the last two weeks has risen to 73, although the authorities said Friday that water levels are beginning to recede in the most affected districts, according to the latest update from the Health Emergency Control Room on Friday.

“The flood situation is improving in most of the region. We are expecting the flood situation to turn normal in two-three days,” Arifuzzaman Bhuiyan, the head of flood forecasting and warning center, told EFE.

Rains cause significant personal and material damage each year in the countries of South Asia, especially during the monsoon season between May and September.

Last month at least 74 people died and millions of people were affected by heavy rains that hit northern India and Bangladesh. EFE


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