Torrential rains have affected lakhs of lives across the north-eastern states with multiple instances of landslides and flash floods reported from the states of Mizoram, Manipur, Meghalaya, Tripura, Nagaland and Assam. The flood situation has deteriorated in Assam with four more deaths reported Saturday, taking the death toll to 17. Thousands of people have suffered the loss of livelihoods and a total of seven deaths have been reported in Manipur alone on Saturday, news agency PTI reported.
Multiple landslides have blocked vital transport routes, hindering the relief work in the affected states. Security forces comprising of paramilitary troops, as well as the Army, have been deployed in carrying out the relief operations and required medical support in the states of Tripura, Assam and Manipur. Official reports stated that the flash floods have destructed crops and plantations, and scores of livestock have swept away causing major loss of livelihoods for local population. The Indian Meteorological Department (IMD) has attributed the heavy rainfall in northeast India to an upper air cyclonic circulation over south Assam and Meghalaya and neighbouring areas.
Close to four lakh people are estimated to be stranded due to floods in Assam, IANS reported. The Assam State Disaster Management Authority (ASDMA) stated a total of 3,86,570 people have been affected in the seven flash flood-hit districts.
“The flood waters have fully damaged 325 houses besides state and National Highways at different places,” an ASDMA official informed IANS, furthering that rainfall had also triggered landslides at Mahur, Harangajao, Maibang and Dima Hasao.
Nearly 350 people have been evacuated to safer places during the last 24 hours by the State Disaster Relief Force (SDRF) and NDRF personnel from Karimganj, Hailakandi and Cacahar. Landslides have been reported at three locations in Guwahati city, but no casualties have been reported so far. Presently, Brahmaputra at Nimatighat in Jorhat, Barak at AP Ghat in Cachar and Badarpurghat in Karimganj are flowing above the danger marks in the state.
The landslides in Dima Hasao and on the Lumding-Badarpur hill section have also disrupted railway services to Assam’s Barak Valley and Tripura. The Northeast Frontier Railways suspended and cancelled several trains on Friday.
National Disaster Response Force, the State Disaster Response Force and Assam Rifles have been carrying out search and rescue operations in the flood-hit areas.
Around 1.8 lakh people have been estimated to be affected by the flash floods in Manipur. One more death reported from the West Imphal district pushed the death toll to seven on Saturday. The rainfall intensity has weakened in the state but the ground situation remains disrupted in the valley districts of Thoubal, Imphal West and Bishnupur, official sources informed PTI.
The state government report mentioned 22,624 houses as damaged by the flood waters and landslides. It also stated that 48 new relief camps would be set up across the state to suffice the efforts to rehabilitate and provide medical assistance to the victims.
The recurrent rains have caused landslides in different parts of the state. East Khasi Hills district in Meghalaya has witnessed landslide that has left commuters stranded on the roads, disrupting the transport facilities. Local media reports stated that farmers bringing agricultural products to the markets have been unable to reach ‘mandis’ due to the blocked roads owing to landslides.
Although no casualty has been reported from the southernmost state in the northeast, landslides have caused a serious paralysis of transport facilities in Mizoram and have left Lunglei district virtually cut off from the state capital Aizawl.
“The main road to Lengpui Aiport has been blocked by mudslides even as the clearance work is going on. Various authorities of the government are working in full swing to bring normalcy in the state,” an official press release stated.
“Hundreds of families were evacuated from the flood-hit areas. Many inhabited areas, houses, paddy fields, roads and low-lying areas were inundated. Normal life was badly affected in Aizawl and various other parts of Mizoram due to torrential rains. Many electric poles and trees were uprooted affecting supply of electricity,” the statement read.
At least 1,066 families have so far been evacuated to safer places due to floods, state disaster management and rehabilitation department officials informed PTI Friday.
The flood situation in Tripura has improved at large, reported PTI. However, close to 40,000 people remain marooned in 189 relief camps across the state, official sources informed. State CM Biplab Kumar Deb, who paid a visit to the worst-hit district of Unakoti Friday, has summoned a meeting of heads of departments such as PWD, Water Resources, Health and Family Welfare, Sankar Chakraborty, the deputy secretary of Revenue Department informed PTI.
“The NDRF, Assam Rifles, Tripura State Rifle personnel are engaged in providing post-flood relief service and search is still on to find out if there is anybody stranded in the flood-affected areas,” the chief minister was quoted as saying.
An official of Northeast Frontier Railway further informed that train services in Lumding – Badarpur section continue to remain suspended as landslides, caused by heavy rain, damaged the tracks and tunnels on the rail route.