Floods in India and Bangladesh leave millions homeless, 18 dead

NDRF personnel rescue residents in Guwahati, a city in the Indian state of Assam.

Xinhua News Agency | beautiful pictures

Military forces have been called in to rescue thousands of people trapped by massive floods that devastated northeastern India and Bangladesh, leaving millions of homes under water and cutting transport links, authorities said. blame said Saturday.

In the Indian state of Assam, at least nine people were killed in floods and 2 million people saw their homes submerged, according to the state’s disaster management agency. Lightning strikes in parts of neighboring Bangladesh have killed at least nine people since Friday.

Both countries have asked their militaries for help as increasing flooding accompanied by rain is expected to continue into the weekend.

In Sylhet, northeastern Bangladesh, on the banks of the Surma River, children sit on the windows of a flooded house while other family members gather on the bed in their flooded house, some wondering How to overcome the challenge.

“How can we eat (under these conditions)?” Anjuman Ara Begum said, standing in the water inside her kitchen. “We are living on muri (puffed rice) and chira (flat rice) and other things given by people. What else can we do? We can’t cook.”

According to Hafiz Ahmed, the airport manager, flights at Osmani International Airport in Sylhet have been suspended for three days due to floodwaters almost reaching the runway. The Sylhet Sunamganj highway was also flooded, but motorbikes were still moving.

According to the flood warning and forecasting center in the capital Dhaka, water levels in all major rivers across the country are rising. The country has about 130 rivers.

The center said the flood situation is likely to worsen in the hardest-hit Sunamganj and Sylhet districts in the northeast as well as the Lalmonirhat, Kurigram, Nilphamari and Rangpur districts in northern Bangladesh.

The Brahmaputra, one of Asia’s largest rivers, broke its mud embankments, flooding 3,000 villages and farmland in 28 of Assam’s 33 districts across the border in India.

“We are forecasting moderate to heavy rainfall in some areas of Assam until Sunday,” said Sanjay O’Neil, an official at the meteorological station in Gauhati, the capital Assam. ever had”.

Several train services have been canceled in India amid torrential downpours over the past five days. In the southern Assam town of Haflong, the railway station is under water and flooded rivers deposit mud and silt along the tracks.

India’s military has been mobilized to assist disaster response agencies in rescuing stranded people and providing food and other necessities. Soldiers used speedboats and inflatable rafts to navigate the flooded areas.

Last month, a pre-monsoon flash flood, triggered by fast-moving water upstream in India’s northeastern states, made landfall in the northern and northeastern regions of Bangladesh, destroying crops. and damage homes and roads. The country is only just beginning to recover as fresh rains hit similar areas this week once again.

Bangladesh, a country of 160 million people, is low-lying and faces threats from natural disasters such as floods and cyclones, as climate change worsens. According to the United Nations Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, about 17% of people in Bangladesh will need to relocate within the next decade or so if global warming continues at current rates. .

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