Guwahati: Around 30,000 people have been affected as floods hit several parts of Assam with heavy downpour across the states of Assam and Meghalaya. At least eight villages in Jorhat district and 52 villages in Barak valley’s Karimganj district were inundated by flood water.
According to the Karimganj district administration, the rising water of Longai river, a trans-boundary river between India and Bangladesh, and the Singla river broke through many of the embankments and spilt into the nearby villages. Heavy downpour in Mizoram caused the deluge, official sources at Karimganj district administration said.
The Deputy Commissioner (Karimganj) M S Manibhannan visited the flood-affected areas of Kabariband, Nayadahar, Mantrigaon, Dhalgaon to review the situation. Relief materials like baby food, biscuits, and bottles of drinking water were distributed among those taking shelter at a number of relief camps. Several people have also taken shelter in embankments and higher places.
Locals, on the other hand, said the water resource department’s negligence in maintaining the embankments is responsible for the river water inundating the district.
The Assam State Disaster Management Authority (ASDMA) said, “At least 23,550 people in Patharkandi of Karimganj district and 3,563 people in Jorhat district were hit in the current wave of floods till Tuesday. At least 20 hectares of cropland was also destroyed so far.”
Four relief camps, including three in Jorhat district, were set up to provide shelter to the displaced persons. 1,203 persons including 281 children have taken shelter in the Jorhat relief camps. Another 25 have taken shelter in relief camps in Karimganj. Relief materials have also been distributed in places across the district.
Mrinmoy Kochari, a flood victim in Malowkhat area of Jorhat said, “Besides the families taking shelter at three relief camps, over 700 families of Nacharaibahi, Bogoriguri, Balikhuti, Kaibarta Gaon, Handique Chuk, Majgaon, Terimerijan, Timtimiya, Namoni Kathonibari and Bormer villages are also taking shelter on Bhogdoi river dyke due to the floods.”
According to the locals, rising water from the Bhogdoi river washed away a part of its embankment near the Solmora area on Dhekargora road last week. The deluge submerged a vast portion of land rendering hundreds of families homeless. The embankment of river Bhogdoi, breached three areas between Malowpam and Malowkhat last week resulting in large-scale flooding of villages nearby.
Eight boats of National Disaster Response Force (NDRF) and State Disaster Response Force (SDRF) were deployed to evacuate some 263 flood victims.
Jorhat district information and public relations official Sarodi Gogoi said, “The water resources department has begun temporary bamboo screening works at the points of the breaches.” Several educational institutions in the district have remained closed since Thursday due to floods. “Social welfare officials have been tending to the children in the relief camps. Fears of disease outbreaks and epidemics loom large in the aftermath of the devastating floods,” Gogoi added.
The ASDMA also recorded heavy erosion at Burhachapari, Tangabasti, Bihigaon area of Sonitpur district, Dhekorgorah in Jorhat and Laharighat area of Morigaon district.
Meanwhile, as per India Meteorological Department (IMD)’s Regional Meteorological Centre (RMC) based in Guwahati, the rainfall is likely to continue over the next week.
The entirety of northeast India has been receiving heavy pre-monsoon downpour for several days now. The last few days have seen heavy downpour in the states of Assam and Meghalaya. While Meghalaya received a whopping 31 per cent excess rainfall till May 15, highest in the northeast in the pre-monsoon season, Assam recorded a nine per cent surplus rainfall.
An RMC spokesperson said, “Meghalaya received 634.1 mm rainfall from March 1 to May 15, whereas 426.1 mm rainfall occurred in Assam during the period.”
Earlier, Chief Minister Sarbananda Sonowal had surveyed preparation of flood management authorities by inspecting the highlands created in the Kaziranga National Park to provide respite to the animals from the perennial floods. The State Forest Department has already erected 33 highlands in the Park has been closed for tourist since May 16.