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Dhaka Tribune

300,000 people marooned as flooding worsens in Brahmaputra basin

Govt says it has opened rescue and aid efforts for flood-hit people

Update : 14 Jul 2020, 12:21 AM

The flood situation deteriorated in eight northern districts marooning some 300,000 people following continuous onrush of water from the upstream in Brahmaputra basin. Fresh areas have been inundated during the last 24 hours until 9am yesterday.

Officials of Bangladesh Water Development Board (BWDB) said major rivers were flowing above danger marks (DM) at 11 points of Nilphamari, Lalmonirhat, Kurigram, Gaibandha, Jamalpur, Bogra, and Sirajganj districts at 9am.

Additional Divisional Commissioner (General) Md Zakir Hossain said low-lying and riverine char areas were newly flooded during the water level rise. He also said rescue operations, moving marooned people to safer places and distribution of relief have begun.

According to BWDB officials, the Brahmaputra River was flowing 54cm above the DM at Noonkhawa and 51cm at Chilmari and Dharla by 88cm at Kurigram points in Kurigram and Ghagot by 31cm above the DM at Gaibandha point at 9am yesterday.

The Jamuna River was flowing 62cm above the DM at Fulchhari in Gaibandha, 57cm at Bahadurabad in Jamalpur, 42cm at Sariakandi in Bogra, 28cm at Kazipur and 6cm at Sirajganj points in Sirajganj districts at 9am.

Following further rises in its water levels during the period, the Teesta River was flowing above the DM by 44cm at Dalia point in Nilphamari and 8cm above the DM at Kawnia point in Rangpur at 9am today.

Executive Engineer of the Teesta Barrage Project (TBP) division of BWDB Rabiul Islam said the Teesta was flowing 55cm above the DM at Dalia point at 12am Sunday. This broke the record of the last 30 years.

BWDB sources told Dhaka Tribune water levels of the Teesta and Dharla rivers might start receding in Rangpur, Lalmonirhat and Nilphamari districts in the next 24 hours.

Meanwhile, the government has launched relief operations as the second phase of deluge exposed thousands of people to sufferings following inundation of vast low-lying areas in the affected districts in the Brahmaputra basin.

In Kurigram, as flood water inundated vast areas more than one lakh people in 56 unions of 9 upazilas of the district have been marooned.

Kurigram Deputy Commissioner Md Rezaul Karim said boats and speedboats have been kept ready to rescue the stranded people.

In Nilphamari, flood situation worsened in Dimla and Jaldhaka upazilas.

The water level of Teesta may rise up to 60cm above the danger mark creating a severe flooding situation, according to WDB.

Tepa Kharibari Union Parishad (UP) Chairman Moinul Haque said incessant rain for the past three days have left around 5,000 people of Dimla and Jaldhaka upazila marooned and around 20,000 were forced to evacuate.

In Tangail, due to continuous rainfall, at least 141 villages along the river have been flooded. The floods have inundated 84,712 people and submerged 6,508 hectares of crop land.

According to the District Relief and Rehabilitation Office, at least 141 villages in 25 unions under Tangail Sadar, Nagarpur, Delduar, Bhuapur, Kalihati and Gopalpur upazilas have been flooded in the district so far.

As a result, 132,480 people have been affected, of which 84,712 people have been inundated. The number of waterlogged families is 21,178. 

On the other hand, 601 houses have been completely washed away in the river and 1,299 houses have been partially washed away.

In total 176sqkm of these six upazilas have been flooded.

In Jamalpur, the district has been hit by flood for the second time within the last four days as water levels in the Jamuna river continued to rise.

A total of 13 unions in Islampur and Dewanganj upazilas of the district were affected in the new flood.

In Lalmonirhat, around 28,000 people of 12 unions in four upazilas of Lalmonirhat are still marooned while the flood situation worsened once again due to the water level rise of Teesta and Dharla in Lalmonirhat.

Heavy rains and hill waters from India, upstream from Bangladesh triggered the water level rise on Sunday, while people of Aditmari, Kaliganj, Hatibandha, and Sadar upazilas have remained marooned for the past three days.

Dulal Abdullah, Rajshahi, Himadri Shekhar Bhodra, Sunamganj, Tazul Islam Reza, Gaibandha, Taiyeb Ali Sarker, Nilphamari, Moazzem Hossain, Lalmonirhat, Bishwajit Deb, Jamalpur, Ariful Islam, Kurigram, Nazmul Huda Nasim, Bogra, Abdullah Al Numan, Tangail contributed to this report

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