Flood in Bangladesh 2017: Flood hits new areas in North
12:00 AM, August 20, 2017 / LAST MODIFIED: 03:50 AM, August 20, 2017

Flood hits new areas in North

Onrush of water from upstream is to blame; 200 schools closed in Manikganj; PM to visit Dinajpur, Kurigram today

Although water levels in the Teesta, Dharla and Jamuna in the northern districts continued to fall, new areas in Rajshahi and Natore went under floodwater yesterday.

The ongoing mid-term examinations of government primary schools in all but Singair upazila of Manikganj were postponed due to flood.

Floodwater inundated low-lying areas in Shibchar upazila of Madaripur. Three pontoons in the district's Kathalbari ferry terminal were submerged as the Padma was flowing 30cm above the danger mark at Shibchar point.

According to Flood Forecasting and Warning Centre, the Ganges-Padma and Kushiyara rivers were showing rising trend while the water in the Brahmaputra, Jamuna and Surma rivers was receding.

In Rajshahi, floodwater entered Bagmara upazila town as the onrush of water from upstream continued yesterday, inundating inter-upazila roads, rural markets and populated areas.

Helal Mahmud Sharif, deputy commissioner of Rajshahi, said the number of affected unions increased to 20 from 14, affecting some 19,000 people of Bagmara, Mohanpur and Bagha upazilas.

The road from Hat Gangopara of Bagmara to Prosadpur of Naogaon, which was under knee-deep water at some places, went under waist-deep water yesterday.

“Floodwater is still rising. People are moving to safer places,” said Bijon Sarker, chairman of Govindapara Union Parishad.

The DC said most of the affected people went to their relatives' homes while nearly 100 people took shelter at different schools, colleges and union parishad buildings.

The district administration distributed 27 tonnes of rice among the flood victims, but it was not enough, he added.

In Natore, the flood situation in Singra upazila deteriorated as the Atrai was flowing 70 cm above the danger mark.

Many people left their homes for safe shelters. Aman paddy on at least seven hectares of land was damaged.

57 LAKH AFFECTED

More than 57.18 lakh people in 27 districts have been affected by flood, according to the latest government data.

At least 98 people died while crops on 4.68 lakh hectares were damaged in the flood, said a working paper presented at a meeting in the capital yesterday. The disaster management and relief ministry organised the programme, chaired by its Secretary Shah Kamal.

In Lalmonirhat, both the Teesta and Dharla were flowing well below the danger level for the last few days.

However, many people were yet to return home as their houses were damaged.

Jobeda Khatun, a flood victim from Char Shiberkuti village in the district, said, “I couldn't return home as my house was badly damaged.”

She took shelter on Lalmonirhat-Phulbari road in the district's Char Kulaghat area nine days ago when her village was hit by flood.

“My little child was crying for food, but I couldn't give him enough food as I didn't have food stock,” she said, adding she got a packet of puffed rice and molasses from college students and 3kg rice and one kg pulse from an NGO.

Even the government relief supplies were sparse. Of the 1,02,750 families affected by flood, only 24,200 received relief so far, said Lalmonirhat Deputy Commissioner Shafiul Arif.

In Tangail, the flood situation was improving owing to the falling water level of the Jamuna.

The water level of the river fell by 17 cm at Tangail point in the last 24 hours. At Bahadurabad point of Jamalpur, the water level fell by 26 cm and at Sirajganj point by 19 cm, said Executive Engineer Shajahan Siraj of Water Development Board (WDB).

SCHOOL EXAMS POSTPONED

The Manikganj primary education office yesterday postponed the mid-term exams of the government primary schools in all but Singair upazila. The decision would remain in force until further notice, said Aleya Ferdousi Shikha, district primary education officer.

More than 200 schools in the district's six upazilas were declared closed due to flood, she said.

The Padma was flowing 72 cm above the danger level after falling by 4 cm at Aricha point of Manikganj at 6:00am yesterday, said WDB Executive Engineer Hasan Mahmud.

However, the water levels of all the internal rivers, including Kaliganga, Dhaleshwari, Ichhamoti, Gazikhali and Kantaboti, in the district were increasing, he added.

In Madaripur, floodwater inundated low-lying areas of Shibchar upazila, affecting hundreds of people in Charjanajat, Kathalbari, Bandorkhola and Sannasirchar unions.

River erosion also took a serious turn in these areas. More than 100 houses, shops, mosques and other establishments were completely destroyed.

Imran Ahmed, upazila nirbahi officer of Shibchar, said the Padma was flowing 30 cm above the danger level at Shibchar point.

The ferry service at Kathalbari ferry ghat was disrupted as three pontoons were submerged yesterday.

Bangladesh Inland Water Transport Corporation was struggling to keep the service running with only one pontoon. The service was also interrupted due to strong currents.

BOY DROWNS IN NAOGAON

A minor boy drowned in floodwater in Naogaon's Atrai upazila yesterday.

Police said seven-year-old Yaam of Hengelkandi village suddenly slipped into floodwater from a boat.

Locals recovered his body around 3:00pm, said Bodruddozza, officer-in-charge of Atrai Police Station.

PM TO VISIT DINAJPUR, KURIGRAM

Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina will visit flood-hit Dinajpur and Kurigram today, said Mir Khairul Alam, deputy commissioner of Dinajpur.

She will visit shelters at Dinajpur Zila School and Tegra High School in Biral upazila. She will distribute relief goods among the flood victims.

Later, the PM will leave Dinajpur for Kurigram.

The flood which struck Dinajpur last week left a trail of destruction.

According to government data, around 114km road under the Roads and Highways Department was affected while around 1,100km road and 100 bridges and culverts under the Local Government Engineering Department (LGED) were damaged.

Aman crops on around 1.26 lakh hectares of land were inundated and fish of 12,000 ponds was carried away by floodwater. Besides, 15km rail track was damaged, causing suspension of rail communications between Dinajpur and Dhaka.

 

Our correspondents in Rajshahi, Lalmonirhat, Dinajpur, Jamalpur, Tangail, Manikganj and Madaripur contributed to this report.

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