Assam continued to reel under devastating floods caused by incessant rain on Saturday, with the deluge claiming eight more lives, including four children, taking the death toll to 25.
At least eight people remain missing. While four people went missing in Hojai district, four more were untraceable in the districts of Bajali, Karbi Anglong West, Kokrajhar and Tamulpur. Overall, the casualties in this year’s floods and landslides went up to 62.
Nearly 31 lakh people spread across 32 districts of the state have been severely affected by the floods. The swirling floodwaters of the Brahmaputra and its tributaries have entered 4,291 villages and submerged 66455.82 hectares of crop land.
The villagers here were not willing to leave their houses saying there are a lot of valuables at their homes but we somehow managed to convince them to vacate their houses. Now we are making arrangements to shift them to the relief camps. We have already arranged food and other essential items for them. The water level in nearby Bhutan is rising so our district is also getting affected and the situation may even get worse in the coming days,” a district administration official in Barpeta said.
Over 1.56 lakh inmates are taking shelter in 514 relief camps opened by the authorities in 21 districts of the state. The affected districts are Bajali, Baksa, Barpeta, Biswanath, Bongaigaon, Cachar, Chirang, Darrang, Dhemaji, Dhubri, Dibrugarh, Dima-Hasao, Goalpara, Golaghat, Hojai, Kamrup, Kamrup (M), Karbi Anglong West, Karimganj, Kokrajhar, Lakhimpur, Majuli, Morigaon, Nagaon, Nalbari, Sivasagar, Sonitpur, South Salmara, Tamulpur, Tinsukia and Udalguri
A flood victim in Nalbari said, “We are reeling under flood waters for the last three to four days and our houses have also been swept away. Nobody from the district administration has come to help us. There is no food given to us by the authorities, I have been starving for the last four days.”
The Indian Army, paramilitary forces, National Disaster Response Force, State Disaster Response Force and the Fire & Emergency Services of the Assam police have launched 24×7 rescue and relief operations. The floods have severely affected hundreds of houses and damaged several roads, bridges and canals besides causing breach to many embankments.
While river Kopili is flowing above the highest flood level mark at Kampur in Nagaon district, the Brahmaputra, Beki, Manas, Pagladia, Puthimari, Kopili and Jia-Bharali are flowing above the danger level mark at several places.
“Our lives have become miserable. This is not new, we face a similar situation during every flood,” said a NF Railway employee in Bongaigaon.
Meanwhile, Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Saturday rang up Assam Chief Minister Himanta Biswa Sarma to enquire about the current flood situation in the state, and assured him of all help from the Centre