Guwahati: The flood situation in Assam worsened today following incessant rainfall in the upper catchment areas of Bhutan and Arunachal Pradesh, affecting more than three lakh people in 13 districts and hit road communication in several places.
The water level of the rivers flowing through the districts of Dhemaji, Lakhimpur, Kokrajhar, Bongaigaon, Chirang, Barpeta, Jorhat, Baska, Sonitpur and Dibrugarh was rising alarmingly while in Nalbari, Sivasagar and Tinsukia districts it was maintaining a rising trend, a report from the Water Resources Department said.
Brahmputra river was flowing above the danger level at Nematighat in Jorhat and Dibrugarh and was maintaining a rising trend in most of the other districts. Several areas of Kaziranga National Park were under flood waters forcing wild animals to move to highland areas in the nearby hills of Karbi Anglong district, a senior park official said.
Flood waters have inundated vast tracts of land in Burapahar and northern range of the park but there was no loss of any wildlife so far, he said. Many other rivers in Kokrajhar, Bongaigaon, Barpeta, Morigaon, Sonitpur and Nalbari district are also flowing above the red mark.
Over three lakh people have been affected in 611 villages while nearly 30 hectares of cropland are under flood water. The district administrations have opened 124 relief camps where nearly a lakh people have taken shelter. National Highway-31C is flooded at several places with a bridge damaged while approach roads leading to many wooden bridges also suffered damage affecting vehicular traffic at different places in the state.
The rising water of the rivers has breached several embankments in Kokrajhar, Chirang, Dhemaji, Barpeta and Goalpara districts. The death toll in this year's floods in Assam stands at five. Two persons have died in Lakhimpur and one each in Bongaigaon, Baksa and Sonitpur.
Assam Water Resources Department Minister Basanta Das is closely monitoring the flood situation and has directed officers of his department to remain alert. A release from the army said that it has launched flood relief operations in Lower Assam with six columns, each comprising an officer, two Junior Commissioned Officers and 35 other ranks, deployed so far.
Boats with on-board motors have been deployed and life jackets and other flood relief stores have been made available in the flood hit-districts of Kokrajhar, Chirang and Bongaigaon, the release said. The army is conducting detailed recce with state government officials in the affected areas.
The army also launched a rescue effort to save an SSB personnel who was washed away by flood water in Kokrajhar district. The troops have ferried approximately 3000 litres of water to the displaced people as clean drinking water was scarce.
Nearly 1,500 people, including 20 children and infants, have been rescued from villages in Bongaigaon and Kokrajhar since early hours on Friday. Army doctors have been rushed to the affected areas to provide first aid and relief. The troops received a distress call late on Thursday night, when a family of four was stuck in the waters near their camp in Kokrajhar and they managed to rescue the family and bring them to safety, the release said.