Stranded Bihar’s Deputy CM rescued, normal life hit hard, operation to rescue people on
Flood situation in Bihar and Uttar Pradesh worsened on Monday with over 141 killed in rain-related incidents in the last four days.
Normal life in the two States has been thrown out of gear due to heavy rain and severe waterlogging in the past two days. In 23 flood-hit districts of Bihar, prices of essential commodities have skyrocketed due to short supply. Healthcare services have been hit hard with reports coming from several districts, including Patna, of hospitals and nursing homes flooded and paitents left in the lurch.
Bihar Chief Minister Nitish Kumar, who carried an aerial survey on Monday to assess the situation, held a high-level meeting to review the situation.
The India Meteorological Department (IMD) has forecast no let-up in rain in Bihar and eastern UP and issued red warning of heavy rainfall in the next 48 hours.
In neighbouring Uttar Pradesh, the flood situation remained grim in many parts of the State. The authorities had to shift about 900 prisoners to Azamgarh and Ambedkarnagar jails. Floodwaters entered the barracks of the Ballia district jail located near the Ganga river.
The Bihar Government said at least 30 people have been killed in the last four days in different rain-related incidents as rainfall continued to batter several parts of the State. Parts of the Patna remained submerged in 4-to-8-foot deep water.
Bihar’s Deputy Chief Minister Sushil Kumar Modi and his family and thousands others across the State were rescued by the disaster management forces.
Renowned singer of Bihar Sharda Sinha, who was stuck in Patna’s Rajendra Nagar, too was rescued.
Interestingly, Union Minister Ashwini Choubey on Monday said it was a “natural calamity” and blamed a particular “Hathiya Nakshatra” (constellation), for the heavy downpour. Union Law Minister and Patna Sahib MP Ravi Shankar Prasad, who was in Patna Sahib on Monday, admitted drainage blockage triggered waterlogging.
Patna has not witnessed waterlogging of such grave intensity since the 1975 floods. Officials said due to choked sewerage system rain water has not receded. The waterlogging has severely affected Nalanda Medical College and Hospital (NMCH), one of Patna’s leading Government hospitals. Several trains and flights have been cancelled, rescheduled or diverted owing to the situation. The Bihar Government has also asked for two helicopters from the Air Force for airdropping food packets and medicines. The Patna district administration has ordered the closure of all schools till Tuesday.
NDRF spokesperson said in most of the places people are stuck in their houses. “Patna is among the worst affected places,” the spokesperson said.
Ministry of Home Affairs said 23 flood affected Bihar districts include Araria, Kishanganj, Madhubani, East Champaran, Supaul, Katihar, Purnia, Lakhisarai, Buxar, Khagaria, Bhagalpur, Munger and Saran.
As many as 1,679 villages are deluged in the flood and one crore people are affected in the State. The exact assessment of loss of kharif crops and animals would be done later.
In Uttar Pradesh, PTI quoted 111 deaths since Thursday last evening as the State Government on Sunday cancelling leave of officials in view of the situation. The districts of Ballia, Varanasi and Jaunpur, located in eastern UP along the border with Bihar, are among the worst-affected in the State. Four Deputy Superintendents of Police, 20 SHOs, 80 sub inspectors, 146 head constables and 380 constables have been deployed to ensure safe shifting of the inmates from Balia jail.
In Jharkhand, three members of a family died in Dumka district after a wall collapsed on them following heavy rains in the region.
Besides these States, as many as 13 deaths were reported on Saturday from Uttarakhand, Madhya Pradesh and Rajasthan. In Gujarat, three women drowned after their car was swept away at a flooded causeway in Rajkot district on Sunday following heavy rains in several parts of the Saurashtra region. On Monday, Junagarh in Gujarat also flooded due to heavy rainfall. Atleast three people have died and 30 were injured after a bus overturned near Trishuliya Ghat, Ambaji in the state.
Tuesday, 01 October 2019 | PNS | New Delhi
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