Quick evacuation is priority in flood-hit Bihar

Filed under: India |

August 14, 2017 (Agencies)

 

With the flood situation in 15 districts of Bihar remaining grim on Monday, the Bihar government has deployed Army personnel, Indian Air Force (IAF) helicopters, and teams of the National and State Disaster Response Forces (NDRF and SDRF) — along with its own officials — to speed up evacuation.

The major rivers in northern Bihar have risen menacingly following heavy rains in the state and additional discharge into its rivers due to incessant rains in neighbouring Nepal over the last three days.

“The rising MahanandaRiver has breached its embankment at two places in Katihar district. Kamla Balan breached its embankment in Darbhanga district, and Gandak breached its embankments in East and West Champaran districts,” State Water Resources Department officials said.
The flood waters have already entered more than 1,000 villages — under 500 panchayats — and the rising levels of the Kosi, Gandak, Bagmati, and the Ganga are posing a threat to districts like Muzaffarpur, Supaul, Sheohar, Gopalganj, Sitamarhi, Araria, and Saharsa.

The floods have hit more than 10 lakh people, and “at least 17 people have drowned in flood waters at different places in the state,” officials added

“Fast evacuation of people from flooded areas is our priority right now,” Pratyaya Amrit, principal secretary of Bihar’s disaster management department, told Rediff.com. “Evacuation is on since Sunday, but it has been speed up from Monday.”

According to Amrit, four Army teams of 300 men and two IAF helicopters are engaged in the evacuation operations in the worst affected districts of Kishanganj, Araria and Purnea.

“We have deployed 16 teams of NDRF, and 13 teams of SDRF for evacuation purposes,” he said, adding that six more NDRF teams would arrive in Patna today and would be deployed with three columns of Army men in the Darbhanga and Katihar districts for evacuation.

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