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Dhaka Tribune

50,000 stranded as Teesta flows 20cm above danger level

Flood-affected families without food for last two days, locals say

Update : 15 Jul 2023, 01:54 PM

At least 50,000 people living in low-lying areas of Rangpur's Gangachara upazila are marooned in flood waters as the Teesta River is flowing 20cm above the danger level due to the onrush of upstream water.

Water at the Dalia barrage point was 20cm above the danger level at 6am on Saturday, increasing to 12cm by 9am. In Gangachara, it was 17cm above the danger level at 9am, while in Kaunia, it was 5cm above the danger mark.

As many as 30 villages of five unions of the upazila are submerged in two to three feet of water due to the Teesta River swelling up.

According to the upazila administration office, 20 villages including Charichali, Shankardah of Lakshitari union, Char Bagdohra of Nohali union, Minerbazar, Dilipbazar, and 300 houses of the Ashrayan project are now inundated.

Apart from this, 10 villages of Alambiditar and Gangachara union are flooded.

Hundreds of families have taken shelter on nearby high ground as their homes and belongings were washed away by the water.

For the last two days, the flood-affected families could not get food for themselves, locals said. 

The local UP chairman, Abdullah Al Hadi, said some 5,000 families in five villages of 10 villages of his union are spending their days in misery due to the flooding.

He said that the way the water in the river continues to rise, it is necessary to rescue the people trapped there and move them to safe places.

On the other hand, Nohali UP Chairman Ashraf Ali said that eight villages of his union's char area are submerged under two to three feet of water and 12,000 people are marooned. Apart from this, hundreds of hectares of farmland are submerged.

Kolkondo Union Chairman Abdur Rauf said that if the water continues to rise, new areas will be flooded.

Meanwhile, Gangachara Upazila Nirbahi Officer Nahid Tamanna said for now, nine tons of rice have been allocated for the flood-affected people residing in nine unions of the upazila and 800 dry food packets have also been provided to them.

Around 20 villages are flooded, including Madhupur Dhusmara Char in Kaunia upazila, leading to over 20,000 people being stranded in the water.

Meanwhile, Executive Engineer Rabiul Islam of the local Bangladesh Water Development Board office said that the water level of the Teesta River has been rising.

The Teesta continues to rise at Dalia barrage in Nilphamari, Gangachra in Rangpur and Kaunia upazila points. As rainfall continues, there is a possibility of a further rise in water levels. Consequently, additional areas might be at risk of flooding.

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