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Lakhs affected as Assam flood situation worsens

Wednesday, 27 June 2012 - 10:30am IST | Place: GUWAHATI | Agency: dna

The authorities call in the Army and the Air Force even as two more persons die in the deluge, taking the death toll to 10.

The flood situation in Assam continues to remain grim forcing the authorities to call in the Army and the Air Force even as two more persons died in the deluge taking the death toll to 10.

According to official sources, the floods, triggered by incessant rains, affected over two lakh people in 15 districts. Jorhat, Dhemaji, Lakhimpur, Dibrugarh and Tinsukia districts were the worst hit. The floods breached embankments there submerging vast tracts of cropland and villages.

State disaster management authorities said the Brahmaputra and its tributaries such as Burhidehing, Subansiri, Dikhow, Desang, Dhansiri, Jia Bharali and Kopili were flowing above the danger mark at many places in eastern Assam. Swift current and the rising water levels prompted the authorities to suspend ferry services on the Brahmaputra.

In Tinsukia, flood water entered the Dibru Saikhowa National Park. Taking advantage of the situation, some people allegedly slaughtered a number of deer and sold their meat.

IAF helicopters were pressed into service in Dhemaji to rescue the marooned people. With their homes submerged under water, the people have taken shelter on higher grounds.
Majuli, Asia’s largest river island, has remained cut off from the rest of the world since Monday. Scores of animals were reportedly swept away by the swirling Brahmaputra water here. The floods have also partially inundated the one-horned rhino famed Kaziranga National Park.

“Seventy percent area of the park is under water. However, we haven’t received any reports about the death of animals so far,” a park official told DNA. He added that the animals had moved to the adjoining hills and highland areas.

In Guwahati, two persons died in landslides triggered by the rains. This forced people residing on the hills to flee to safer places.

The state’s chief minister Tarun Gogoi, currently in the United States, instructed officials to intensify relief and rescue operations. He also directed the Water Resources Department to take all possible measures to ensure the protection of embankments.

“The chief minister asked the district authorities to provide sufficient relief materials, medicines and drinking water to those affected,” official sources said.

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