Flooding worsens further in north

Staff Correspondent

28 September, 2020 12:00 AM printer

The overall flood situation has worsened further in the northern region as the water level of the Upper Meghna Basin in the northeastern region of the country is increasing gradually.

Hundreds of flood victims have been leading a miserable life with inadequate relief, many alleged.

Official sources said the water levels of major rivers in the northern region were swelling and flowing downstream, inundating fresh areas.

Heavy rainfall in northern and northeastern regions of Bangladesh and adjacent Assam, Meghalaya, and Darjeeling areas of India has triggered the fourth-phase flood in this country.

Lowlands and char areas in Thakurgaon, Rangpur, Kurigram, Gaibandha, Bogura, Natore and Naogaon have been submerged as major rivers crossed the danger mark on the day due to the onrush of upstream water.

Seven rivers — Dharla, Jamuneswari, Jamuna, Karatoa, Gur, Atrai and Tangon — were flowing above the danger level on Sunday, said Arifuzzaman Bhuiyan, executive engineer of the Flood Forecasting and Warning Centre (FFWC).

The Ganges is in rising trend, which may continue in the next 72 hours and the Brahmaputra is in a steady state which may rise in the next 24 hours, he said.

In Rangpur, heavy rainfall has caused water-logging in many areas, inundating many city streets.

According to the Met office, 433mm rain was recorded in the city in the 24 hours from 10:00pm on Saturday to 10:00am on Sunday.

As a result, around 50,000 people of Rangpur City Corporation area have been marooned.

Mulatol, Kamarpara, Kamalkasna, Babu Khan, Shahipara, Habibnagar, City Bazar, Dhap, Hajipara, Amangsukukrul, Munsipara, Barkatia Masjid, Gomastapara, Rangpur Central Bus Terminal, in front of Rangpur Kotwali Police Station, Tatipara, Rabartsonganj and Masuapara were inundated after the rain.

Many of the areas went under knee-deep water, and residents became marooned.

In Kurigram, a number of char areas, including Kurigram Sadar upazila, Rajarhat upazila, Phulbari upazila and Ulipur upazilas, were flooded, marooning 60,000 people and road communications has been snapped in many parts of Kurigram.

About 15,000 hectares of cropland has gone under water in nine upazilas of Kurigram during the fifth-phase flooding triggered by upstream water and heavy downpours.

A large-scale destruction of crops may potentially cause a shortage of supplies to local market and trigger hikes in prices of essentials.

“Damage to crops could increase further,” said Shamsuddin Mia, acting deputy director of Kurigram, Department of Agriculture Extension (DAE).

Meanwhile, many flood victims took shelter on high roads and embankment with their livestock. Besides, a number of houses were washed away by the strong current of Dharla River while erosion took a serious turn in many areas, putting houses, educational institutions, roads and flood protection dam at risk.

Erosion took a serious turn at 20 points of Brahmaputra, Dharla, Dudhkumar and Teesta rivers and the work to protect the riverbanks is underway.

Water level in most of the rivers and tributaries in the Ganges basin recorded a rising trend for the third consecutive day because of onrushing of floodwater from the upstream hilly catchment areas.

However, the rivers were still flowing below the danger level at 26 points, while above the danger level at four other points on the day.

Local office of Bangladesh Water Development Board (BWDB) recorded a rising trend at all the eight points in the Ganges and the Padma Rivers today like the previous day.

Water level in the Ganges River further went up by 25 centimeter (cm), 18 cm, 14cm and 8cm at Pankha in Chapainawabganj, at Rajshahi, at Hardinge Bridge and at Talbaria points respectively.

Water level in the Korotoa further went up by 13cm and one cm at Bogura and at Chak Rahimpur points respectively.

Meanwhile, the local administration has been continuously distributing relief materials in the worst-affected areas since the flood began.

More than 2.19 lakh families consisting of around 9.86 lakh people in different districts of the division affected badly by the flood have, so far, been got relief materials to overcome their livelihood related hardships.

Some 5,827 patients were reported to have suffered from various water-related diseases and 25 people died with flood related incidents, particularly drowning and snakebite since July 1, the sources added.