8 killed as flood situation worsens | The Daily Star
09:37 PM, August 13, 2017 / LAST MODIFIED: 09:50 PM, August 13, 2017

8 killed as flood situation worsens in Bangladesh

Eight people were killed and five others went missing today as the overall flood situation has worsened in the country's northwest and northeast regions.

The water of the Teesta, Dharla, Someshwari, Atrai and Surma rivers were flowing above the danger level due to incessant rain for the last few days and onrush of water from the upstream.

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In Lalmonirhat, four people of two families were washed away by the floodwater and three others went missing while trying to rescue them in Kulaghat union of Sadar upazila, said local UP chairman Idris Ali.

Officer-in-charge of Sadar Police Station Uday Kumar Mondal identified the deceased as Mozam Ali, 45, of West Barua village, his wife Asma Begum, 38, Abdul Hamid, 36, his son Hridoy, 9, of the same village.

Meanwhile, over 2 lakh people of 30 unions in the district's five upazilas -- Patgram, Kaliganj, Hatibandha, Aditmari and Sadar -- were marooned by the floodwater as both the Teesta and Dharala were flowing above the red mark.

The flood bypass road on the Teesta Barrage broke down due to the opening of 54 gates of Gajoldoba Barrage in India and the onrush of water coupled with heavy rain in the last five days, said Mustafizer Rahman, executive engineer of Bangladesh Water Development Board (BWDB) at Dalia point.

Local BWDB office on Sunday morning issued a red alert in the Teesta Barrage area, asking people living in 63 chars to keep updated with the latest flood situation, he said.

The floodwaters also disrupted road and rail communications of Lalmonirhat with other parts of the country.

The BWDB officials said the Dharala was flowing 108 cm above the danger level while the Teesta 65 cm in the early hours of day.

Meanwhile, 18 villages went under water as Itpota, Shiberkhuti and Khatamari dams in Moghalhat area in Sadar upazila fell apart due to heavy current of the river. The Patgram town protection embankment also collapsed.

The worst affected areas are Dahgram of Patgram upazila, Dauabari, Patikapara, Sindurna, Saniajan of Hatibandha upazila, Bhotmari, Tushbhander of Kaliganj upazila, Mohishkhocha, Durgapur of Aditmari upazila, Rajpur, Gokunda Khuniagach, Borobari, Kulaghat and Mogolhat under Sadar upazila.

District Education Officer Nobez Uddin said a total of 168 educational institutions in the district were declared closed for floodwater.

Several thousands of farmers faced heavy losses as fishes of over 300 ponds were washed away by surging water, said Rezaul.

Lalmonirhat deputy commissioner Shafiul Arif told UNB that some 1,600 packets of dry foods have been distributed among the flood-affected people.

In Kurigram, four people died and two others went missing in the past 24 hours till 6pm today.

The deceased are Josna Begum, 25, wife of Aliur Rahman in Sadar upazila, one-and-half-year-old boy Babu, son of Dulu Miah of Bhelakopa area of Kurigram municipality, Lutfar Rahman, 35, son of Khatak Mamud of Prankrisna village, and Hazrat Ali, 55, son of late Kachu Mamud of Gorokmandal village.

Sadequl Haque Nuru, former chairman of Sinai union parishad in Rajarhat upazila, said two locals Rifat, 10 and 32-year-old wife of Lokman were washed away by the floodwater when the Wapda embankment broke down at Kaluarchar on Saturday night.

Executive engineer of Kurigram Roads and Highways Department Abul Barkat Md Khurshid Alam said a four-kilometer portion of Kurigram-Rangpur highway and nine kilometers of Kurigram-Bhurungamari highway went under water and two points of Bhurungamari road were severely damaged.

At least 500 educational institutions were inundated by the water.

In the last 24 hours, the Dharala was flowing 118cm above the red mark while the Brahmaputra 20cm at Chilmari point and the Dudhkumar 137cm at Pateshwari point. Besides, the water level of 13 other rivers, including the Teesta, was also increasing, said Local BWDB.

Over 2 lakh people of Roumari, Rajibpur, Chilmari, Ulipur, Nageshwari, Bhurungamari, Phulbari and Sadar upazilas were affected by the flood.

In Netrakona, the water of the Someshwari was flowing 150cm above the danger mark, leaving over 30 villages in Durgapur upazila inundated.

Roads have also gone under water and all educational institutions have been submerged while several fisheries washed away by the floodwaters.

Durgapur upazila agriculture officer Omar Faruk said around 500 hectares of paddy field will be damaged if the water level increases.

In Nilphamari, a 37-metre portion of a flood control embankment along the Khorkhoria River collapsed in Kamarpukur union of Saidpur today due to the onrush of water, halting the flight operation of Saidpur Airport as its runway went under water.

Besides, the floodwater submerged 150 acres of paddy field in the union and around 250 families marooned in the water.

The communication between Parbatipur and Saidpur was disrupted as the water inundated the roads connecting the two upazilas.

The water might enter the Saidpur Cantonment, added the BWDB official.

In Sunamganj, the Surma River was flowing 83cm above the danger level. The affected people were suffering from lack of food and shelter.

The flood has turned into a devastating form damaging 4,000 and 100 hectares of Aman paddy fields along with 15 hectares of vegetable fields, informed local Agricultural Extension Department.

Mid-term examinations of 893 primary schools were suspended and at least 40 high schools were inundated with flood water.

In Sherpur, the flashflood caused by water from the upstream inundated fresh low-lying areas damaging at least 1520 hectares of paddy fields.

Several thousand people of Jogania, Kalaspar, Marichpuran areas in Nalitabari upazila and Sadar, Hatibandha, Dhansail unions of Jhinaigati upazila remained trapped in floodwater.

A 1000-metre portion of the river protection embankment of Bhogai River broke down at 13 points, locals said.

In Naogaon, intermittent rain for the past few days raised the water level of the Atrai River which was flowing 120cm above danger level affecting 300 families.

In Dinajpur, a flood control embankment broke down at Mahudpara and Sundora triggering public sufferings and huge damage of agriculture, education and wildlife.

Exam papers of JSC examinees of eight districts were damaged as three warehouses of local Education Board went under water, said exam controller of Dinajpur Education Board Tofazzur Rahman.

People of 30 villages in seven unions of Phulbari upazila were trapped in floodwater while Dhamrai, Forakkabad, Razarampur and Azimpur unions of Biral upazila were freshly inundated.

In Sirajganj, 45-metre portion of an embankment in Chouhali upazila went into the gorge of the Jamuna River in the morning triggering flood fear among the locals who blamed the mismanagement and corruption of the authorities in building the embankment for the collapse.

In Bogra, the Jamuna River swelled by 50cm in the past 24 hours flowing 37cm above the danger mark after neighbouring country India opened the gates of Teesta Barrage, according to local Water Development Board.

Sariakandi UNO Moniruzzaman said the low-lying areas of six unions- Kajla, Chaluabari, Chandanbaisha, Kornivari, Bohail and Hatsherpur - were newly flooded.

In Sylhet, the flood situation in at least 13 unions of Sadar upazila deteriorated further, leaving over 2 lakh people marooned.

All the rivers in the district, including Surma, Kushiara, Chela, Dhalai, Morachela, Sunai and Piain, were flowing above red mark.

Upazila Secondary Education Officer Golam Rabbani Mazumdar said almost all educational institutions were submerged by the floodwater in the affected areas.

Agriculture officer KM Badrul Haque said 80 percent of Aman paddy land went under water.

Surgeon at the upazila livestock office Dr Abdus Shahid Hossain said a large number of domestic animals were suffering for lack of food and shelter.

Meanwhile, the operation of shuttle train Thakurgaon-Panchagarch was suspended as the trail tracks went under water at different points.

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