Flood fury in Assam: 19 lakh affected, Kaziranga submerged; Rajnath Singh to survey worst-hit areas

Guwahati: Assam continued to be ravaged by flood as an estimated 19 lakh people were affected in the state due to heavy rainfall and swelling of rivers triggered by incessant rains in upper catchment areas of Arunachal Pradesh and Bhutan.

Home Minister Rajnath Singh to make an aerial survey of flood-affected areas of Nagaon, Morigaon and Kaziranga in Assam. The Minister will visit Bhagatgaon Camp of flood-affected residents in Morigaon (Assam) and also hold meetings with Assam CM and other state government officers

The worst affected districts are Lakhimpur, Golaghat, Bongaigaon, Jorhat, Dhemaji, Barpeta, Goalpara, Dhubri, Darrang, Morigaon and Sonitpur, Assam State Disaster Management Authority (ASDMA) said. The other affected districts are Sivsagar, Kokrajhar, Dibrugarh, Goalpara, Tinsukia, Biswanath, Nalbari, Baksa, Udalgluri, Kamrup (M), Chirang, Kamrup and South Kamrup, the ASDMA said.

The Brahmaputra is flowing above the danger mark at Guwahati, Nematighat in Jorhat, Tezpur in Sonitpur, Goalpara and Dhubri towns.

To provide succor to the affected people, relief has been distributed as per requirement in all the flood affected districts and funds for providing relief have been placed with the district administrations in advance. NDRF, SDRF and the army are helping the district administration in evacuating the affected population to safe places. A total of 19 lakh people were directly of indirectly affected by floods. State Disaster Response Force (SDRF) teams with deep divers have also been attached to the 27 Fire Stations of the State.

Sonowal visits flood-hit areas
On Friday morning, Assam Chief Minister Sarbananda Sonowal visited flood affected areas in Dhubri and Chirang districts and directed the district administration to accelerate relief and rescue operations.

The Chief Minister visited a relief camp set up at Pratap Chandra Higher Secondary School at Gauripur and took stock of the medical, drinking water and other ancillary facilities being given to the people lodged there.

Asking the administration to take special care of all kinds of medical emergencies and the health of the infants, children and elderly people in the relief camps, Sonowal directed the medical department to keep an eye to tackle the outbreak of any epidemic.

In his second lap of his tour, Sonowal held another review meeting with the district administration of Bongaigaon and Chirang and took stock of the measures.

Sonowal asked the DCs to provide all facilities including sanitary and security to the camp inmates and emphasised that from the next year monitoring and supervision of embankments will be undertaken well ahead of the onset of monsoon.

Kaziranga submerged
Meanwhile, eight rhino cubs displaced and separated from their mothers were rescued by Kaziranga National Park and Centre of Wildlife Rehabilitation and Conservation (CWRC) team.

The calves were separated during the floods from the mighty Brahmaputra that submerged over 90 per cent of the World Heritage Site, Kaziranga National Park (KNP) authority said.

Three of the calves are one-month-old, two are five months old, another two are seven months old, while one is one-year- old, said CRWC veterinarian Dr Pranjit Basumatary.

On the other hand, KNP authority rescued two hog deer which were found trapped in a fence when both were trying to flee towards a campus in search of food at a nearby village.

After the villagers reported the matter, a rescue team from KNP rescued them and admitted them to the CWRC semi-ICU ward, informed Rathin Barman, the director of CWRC.

The ASDMA has opened a round-the-clock Control Room with phone numbers 1070, 1079 (Toll free) and 0361-2237011 (Landline) for any information and assistance.

Authorities have opened 703 relief camps and distribution centres, where almost 2.3 lakh people are sheltered across districts, ASDMA said.

The flood water have overtopped 2.13 lakh hectares of agricultural area with standing crops across the state, besides washing away number of roads, embankments, bridges and other infrastructure facilities.