Since the beginning of monsoons, north-eastern India (especially Assam) and Bihar have faced the severe loss of life and property due to terrible floods. Recently the situation has only deteriorated in Bihar and the floods coupled up with the ongoing coronavirus pandemic have taken a toll on a number of lives. 16 districts of Bihar have been submerged in water and more water from the overflowing rivers of Nepal origin has entered these areas worsening the situation and has taken two more lives. More than 69 lakh people are affected and the death toll has reached 21.

The two recent casualties have been reported by the disaster management department and both were from the Siwan district which is one of the 16 districts affected by floods that originated in Nepal and has been flowing through the northern part of the state. Before these deaths, the district of Darbhanga had reported seven casualties while Muzaffarpur has seen the death of six people band is followed by the districts of West Champaran and Siwan.

The number of people affected so far is about 69.03 lakhs which is an increase of 3 lakhs since the previous day. The number of affected panchayats has risen to 1185 from 1165 during this period. A report from Tanti Tola, situated along River Budhi Gandak in the Khagaria district, stated a breach in an embankment on Wednesday night. Following this, water resources minister Sanjay Kumar Jha tweeted, “Repair and restoration work is underway non-stop at the embankment. Officials are keeping a watch. People are advised to avoid panic and scaremongering.”

Sitamarhi, Sheohar, Supaul, Saharsa, Kishanganj, Gopalganj, Madhepura, Madhubani, Samastipur and East Champaran are some of the other natural calamity affected districts.

Among the masses hit by a flood, 4.82 lakhs have been evacuated from the badly hit regions. Out of them, 12,239 people are taking shelter in eight relief camps set for them. About 1402 community kitchens have been set up to feed more than 10 lakh, flood-affected people. More than 20 NDRF teams have been deployed to carry out the relief work across all affected districts in addition to the State Disaster Response Force (SDRF). The NDRF personnel have helped more than 11,000 people relocate to safer spots, according to Vijay Sinha, commandant of the 9th battalion stationed at Bihta which is near the state capital, Patna. In addition to rescue operations, the NDRF is also reaching out to people who are stranded in marooned areas and who require urgent medical help.

According to Mr Sinha, many medical emergencies that involved small children, pregnant women and elderly people have been taken care of by the timely intervention of the NDRF teams in rescue operations. The latest incident of rescue was from the Darbhanga district where a snakebite victim of 48 years of age was picked up from her stranded village and rushed for medical attention at the Hanuman Nagar PHC, added Mr Sinha. Let’s hope Bihar recovers soon from nature’s wrath with no further loss of life or property.

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