GUWAHATI: Ten more people died in the second wave of floods in Assam since Monday evening, taking the death toll to 28. The first wave in July had claimed 82 lives. The situation on Tuesday further worsened with more areas coming under the grip of the deluge.
According to the state disaster management authorities, three of the deaths occurred in Morigaon district while Dhemaji, Darrang, Kokrajhar, Dhubri, Goalpara, Nagaon and Dibrugarh recorded one death each. Morigaon and Barpeta are the worst-hit.
The Brahmaputra and its tributaries Dhansiri, Jia Bharali, Puthimari, Beki and Sankosh besides rivers Katakhal and Kushiyara in southern Assam were in a spate, flowing above the danger mark at several places.
So far, 33.28 lakh people have been affected under 89 revenue circles of 25 of the state’s 33 districts. The number of villages affected is 3,186 while cropland affected has been in areas of over 1.82 lakh hectares.
The authorities have set up 545 relief camps in 22 districts where 1,67,381 displaced people are lodged.
The swirling flood waters breached embankments and damaged roads, culverts and bridges in a number of districts. The National Disaster Response Force and the State Disaster Response Force were engaged in rescue and relief operations.
Railway authorities have cancelled all incoming trains from various parts of the country to the Northeast. Trains are now plying between Siliguri and New Jalpaiguri in West Bengal to Assam and within the state.
Supplies are scarce as the roads, which connect the state and the Northeast with the rest of the country, are flooded in Bihar and north Bengal.
Addressing people during Independence Day celebrations, chief minister Sarbananda Sonowal said the state government had been trying to help those marooned.
“We’ve instructed the district administration to grant ex gratia payments to the next of kin of the victims within the next 48 hours. The government is also undertaking rehabilitation work at a fast pace,” he said.
At many educational institutes and government offices, the national flag on Tuesday was hoisted amid knee and chest-deep flood waters.