New Delhi: Home Minister Amit Shah Saturday directed the NDRF and all the agencies dealing with flood rescue and relief operations to remain on high alert so that they are able to handle any situation that arises.
Heavy rains and floods have affected Assam, Bihar, Meghalaya and Mizoram. While seven people lost their lives in Assam, five died in Meghalaya and two each in Bihar and Mizoram.
"The home minister has directed the NDRF (National Disaster Relief Force) and all officials concerned to remain on high alert to deal with any situation arising out of the floods," Union Minister of State for Home Nityanand Rai told reporters here.
The directive was issued at a high-level meeting, chaired by Shah and attended by top officials. Rai said the home minister also directed the central government officials to be in regular touch with the states which have been affected by the floods so far.
"The home minister said all efforts should be made to save lives and properties in the flood-hit areas," Rai said. The meeting reviewed the rains in the country while officials briefed him about the situation in Assam, Bihar and Meghalaya.
"NDRF teams have already been deployed in the affected states and, if required, more team will be sent. We are ready to provide whatever help the states will need. 24-hour control rooms have also been set up by agencies concerned," he said.
Later in a tweet, Shah said he had a meeting with MoS Nityanand Rai, senior MHA officials and departments concerned on the developing flood situation in various parts of the country. "Directed all related officials to ensure proper relief, rescue and rehabilitation measures," he tweeted.
In a statement, the Home Ministry said the India Metrological Department (IMD) informed that in the last 3-4 days, Assam and Bihar have got excess rainfall. Heavy rainfall is expected in these two states during the next 48 hours.
The director general of the NDRF said that 73 NDRF teams have been pre-positioned in vulnerable areas of flood-affected states along with all necessary equipments. These teams are in addition to the teams kept on alert at battalion headquarters and Regional Response Centers (RRC). The NDRF teams have also rescued about 750 people in Assam and Bihar.
The Central Water Commission (CWC) informed that in Assam Brahmaputra, Beki, Jiabharali, Katakhal and Barak and in Bihar Kamla, Bagmati, Mahananda, Gandak rivers are flowing in severe situation.
Both the IMD and the CWC are issuing forecast bulletins at regular intervals. Control Rooms in MHA, NDRF, IMD and CWC are keeping close watch on the situation on a 24x7 basis, the statement said.
After review, the home minister directed senior officers to take every possible measure to deal with the situation arising out of southwest monsoon in the country and to extend all necessary assistance to the flood-hit states, it said.