• Monday, Oct 26, 2020
  • Last Update : 04:08 pm

Flash floods raise public suffering in Northern Bangladesh

A man with his bicycle wades through floodwater in Kumargari under Saidpur upazila in Nilphamari Saturday morning, September 26, 2020 Dhaka Tribune

Floodwaters have started receding in the Brahmaputra shoal areas as the waters of the Brahmaputra river are now flowing below the danger level

The overall flood situation in Kurigram and Lalmonirhat has worsened further. The Dharla and Teesta rivers are still flowing above the danger level, while river erosion has taken a serious turn in Bogra where the waters of the Jamuna and Bangali rivers are rising again.

Meanwhile, more and more low lying regions are becoming adversely affected by the floods currently prevailing in Nilphamari as a result of continuous rainfall for the past week.

However, floodwaters have started receding in the Brahmaputra shoal areas as the waters of the Brahmaputra river are now flowing below the danger level.

The ongoing flood has exacerbated the sufferings of poverty stricken families with a crisis of dry foods, shelter, and safe drinking water.

Meanwhile, crop land, schools, government and private installations, business enterprises and bazaars, have all gone under floodwaters, and people in the affected areas are losing everything to river erosion.

In Kurigram, the Dharla River is flowing 28 centimeters above its danger level due to incessant rainfall and the onrush of water from India, according to the Water Development Board.

Hundreds of families in Holokhana, Bhoghdanga and Jatrapur unions under Sadar upazila have lost their homes to erosion along the Dharla River, fuelled by recent floods.

People in the affected areas who have taken shelter on higher ground, are living a miserable life as the rehabilitation process is slow.

Aman paddy and vegetable farms have been inundated by flood water, causing a huge loss to farmers.

Erosion on the Dharla, Teesta, Dudhkumar and Brahmaputra rivers has also taken a serious turn, making thousands of people homeless. 

Kurigram Water Development Board Executive Engineer Md Ariful Islam, said the Dharla river is flowing above its danger level, but the water level will come down within a day or two.

Speaking on the issue, Kurigram Deputy Commissioner (DC)Md Rezaul Karim said: We have sent a list to the ministry for rehabilitation.”

In Bogra, the water level of the Jamuna River in Sariakandi upazila is 11 centimetres above its danger level while the Bangali River is 3 centimeters above its danger level, said Mahbubur Rahman, executive engineer of the Water Development Board.

River erosion has intensified in Narci, Sadar and Bhelabari, and Kutupur upazila, destroying homes, establishments, schools, roads and crop land.

Around 300 hectares of cropland in Sadar, Kajla, Bohail, Kornibari, Haatsherpur, Chandanbaisha went under water in Sariakandi upazila, said upazila agriculture officer Abdul Halim.

Meanwhile, the Chargodargari Government Primary School where hundreds of students from poor backgrounds study, is under threat of river erosion.

In Nilphamari, more and more low-lying regions are becoming affected by the flood situation currently prevailing as a result of continuous rainfall for the past week.

Roads, homes, and croplands in low lying towns and villages have become waterlogged. Small and big rivers mark a slight rise on account of ceaseless rain in the district. 

Lokman Hakim, meteorological assistant at the Saidpur Meteorological Office, said the district recorded 45mm of rainfall in the last 24 hours. 

“Similar rainfall is expected for another 2-3 days,” he said. 

Meanwhile, Nurul Islam, gauge reader at the Teesta Barrage, said in the last 24 hours they recorded 97mm of rainfall at Dalia point in Dimla, Nilphamari.

The Teesta and the Charalkata, Jamuneshwari, Chikli, Kumlai and Deonai rivers in the district show a slight rise in the last 24 hours, said the Dalia Water Development Board's Flood Forecasting and Warning Centre.

Although the Teesta was flowing 8cm below the danger level at Dalia point on Saturday morning, it still marks a rise from last evening when the river was flowing 24cm below the danger level.

In Lalmonirhat, the Teesta River is flowing 10 centimeters above its danger at Dalia point, said ASN Aminur Rashid, sub assistant engineer of Water Development Board.

“We have got a list of 13697 flood affected families in the district. They are being provided with rice and dry foods, said Deputy Commissioner Abu Zafar.

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