Assam floods: 24.9 lakh affected; incessant rains worsen situation

Most localities of Silchar were still water-logged and the situation remained critical with residents facing a shortage of food, drinking water and medicines.

Guwahati: The flood situation in Assam worsened on Wednesday following incessant rain, with five more people losing their lives in the deluge and the number of affected people rising to 24.92 lakh, while Silchar town in Cachar district continued to remain inundated for the last 10 days, officials said.

The MeT Department has issued a ‘red alert’ in the districts of Kokrajhar, Chirang and Baksa, and an ‘orange alert’ in Dhubri, Barpeta, Bongaigaon, Udalguri, Biswanath, Lakhimpur, Dhemaji and Dibrugarh.

The weather office has also issued an ‘orange alert’ in South Salmara, Kokrajhar, Chirang and Baksa districts till Thursday.

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Five fresh fatalities have taken the total number of deaths due to floods and landslides in Assam this year to 139, while three more people have been reported missing, a bulletin issued by the Assam State Disaster Management Authority (ASDMA) said.

Brahmaputra, Beki, Kopili, Barak and Kushiyara rivers were flowing above the danger level in some places although most of the remaining rivers were showing a receding trend.

Most localities of Silchar were still water-logged and the situation remained critical with residents facing a shortage of food, drinking water and medicines.

The town has remained submerged for the last 10 days due to breach of a dyke in Bethkundi. Deputy Commissioner Keerthi Jalli said work is underway to repair it.

She said priority was being given to reach out to the affected people with clean drinking water and food while medical camps are being organised by the health department to ensure prevention of water-borne diseases.

A team of the National Health Mission, Assam, led by its Mission Director M S Lakshmi Priya is also camping at Silchar to ensure that the affected people get proper medical facilities.

Medical personnel have been deployed in the 28 municipal wards of the town, while health camps have been organised at different relief centres where inmates have been provided with ORS packets for prevention of diarrhoea.

Jalli said water pouches and water purifying tablets are being distributed among the affected people, while temporary toilets have been set up in some camps.

She said officials are inspecting the markets to ensure that shopkeepers don’t charge exorbitant rates from customers.

An online form has been issued for organisations willing to help through Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) to rebuild the infrastructure damaged by the devastating floods, she said.

A total of 2,389 villages under 72 revenue circles have been affected across the state, while 1,76,201 people have taken shelter in 555 relief camps.

Floodwaters have damaged 155 roads and five bridges while seven embankments have been breached. A total of 64 houses have been fully damaged and 5,693 partially damaged by the floods.

Farmlands over 85,673.62 hectares of land are still inundated, while 4,304 animals have washed away.

Large scale erosion was reported from Chirang, Dibrugarh, Hailakandi, Kokrajhar, Morigaon, Nalbari, Sonitpur, Tamulpur and Udalguri districts, the bulletin said.

Two landslides were reported in Karimganj and Lakhimpur districts, and urban flooding continued in Cachar and Morigaon.

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