Rivers around capital swell

Flood death toll rises to 64 across Bangladesh

Emran Hossain | Published: 17:14, Jul 21,2019 | Updated: 23:52, Jul 21,2019


A family takes their cattle to a shelter after their house went under flood water at Bhuapur in Tangail on Sunday. — Sony Ramany

There is no possibility of flood waters entering the capital though all the rivers flowing by it are swelling, the Water Development Board told New Age Sunday.

At least eight people drowned in flood waters, three in Jamalpur, one each in Gaibandha, Sunamganj, Sherpur, Tangail and Sirajganj and at least two others died of snake bite in Jamalpur in 24 hours until Sunday morning, according to the Health Emergency Operation Centre and Control Room.

The death toll due to floods rose to 64 since July 10, it said.

According to the Flood Forecasting and Warning Centre the Padma and the rivers flowing by the capital are rising but the other rivers are receding.

‘Low lying areas on the periphery of capital might get flooded in next few days  as they are not protected by embankments,’ FFWC assistant engineer Alraji Leon told New Age.

He, however, discounted any possibility of flood waters entering into the capital.

The Turag rose by 24 cm in six hours until 3 PM Sunday while the Dhaleswari swelled by 12 cm, the Buriganga by 10 cm, the Kaliganga by 9 cm  and the Balu by three cm during the period.

The Banshi at Nayarhat and Sitalakhya at Narayanganj rose by three cm each during the same period.

The floods remained stable at Manikganj, Rajbari, Faridpur and Munshiganj districts but the waters might begin to recede from Monday morning, , said the FFWC.

New Age correspondent in Manikganj reported that severe erosion by the devastating Padma made hundreds of villagers homeless in Daulatpur, Shibalay, Ghior, Harirampur and Shaturia upazilas in the Manikganj district.

Travellers were seen stranded waiting to cross the Padma by ferries, launches and speed boats at Paturia in Manikganj and Daulatdia in Rajbari.

Over the last six days the time to cross the Padma doubled due to strong currents and therefore the number of trips by ferries, launches and speed boats was reduced to a half.

Vehicles waiting to cross the river by ferries queued up on both sides creating long traffic tailbacks.

It takes longer for the ageing ferries of Bangladesh Inland Water Transport Corporation to cross the river amid strong currents, BIWTC   assistant general manager Jillur Rahman told New Age.

New Age correspondent in Kurigram reported that the sufferings of the marooned people multiplied as relief supplies remained elusive though the Teesta and Dharla continued to recede.

Water borne diseases broke out in the northern districts adding to the plight of where 8.5 lakh marooned villagers.

Thousands of villagers evacuated themselves to embankments where human beings and their cattle took shelters virtually under the open skies over the last seven days sans food and safe water to drink. The condition of 45,185 marooned villagers were in no way different at 186 flood shelter centres.

Momena Begum, 32, of Moshalerchar, Begumganj, Ulipur, said that she decided to stay at her submerged home out of fears that the conditions could be far worse on embankments and the flood shelters.

‘I am only scared of  dying  due to snake bite,’ said Momena.

The essentials are unaffordable due soaring prices across the district. 

Devastating floods killed 12 across the Kurigram district, submerged crops on 19,638 hectares, damaged 41 bridges, 40 km of embankments and 477 km of roads, said district  relief and rehabilitation officer.

Flood waters would continue to recede from Bogura, Jamalpur, Kurigram, Gaibandha and Sylhet until Monday morning, said the FFWC.

A total of 13 rivers were flowing above their danger levels at 21 points at 9AM Sunday.

The FFWC recorded country’s highest rainfall of 100 mm in 24 hours until 9 AM Sunday at Sunamganj.

Heavy rains also occurred at places in Sylhet divisions.

In 24 hours until 8.30 AM Sunday the Indian Met Office recorded rains at most places in West Bengal and Sikkim and at many places in Assam, Meghalaya and Tripura.

Triggered by heavy rains inside Bangladesh and in the upstream in India, floods wreaked havoc in Bangladesh for more than two weeks.

Over 30 lakh people have been marooned in 21 districts and about 60,000 houses were damaged by gushing flood waters.

The Met Office predicted light to moderate rainfall at many places in Sylhet division over next 24 hours until 9 AM Monday and at a few places over Rangpur and Mymensingh divisions.

The Met Office recorded country’s highest rainfall of 54 mms in 24 hours until 6 AM Sunday at Tetulia.

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