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POST TIME: 12 July, 2019 01:02:59 AM / LAST MODIFIED: 12 July, 2019 11:16:38 AM
Heavy rains trigger floods in 17 districts
SPECIAL CORRESPONDENT, Dhaka

Heavy rains trigger floods in 17 districts

An entire locality in Army Para area of Bandarban has been inundated under chest-high waters due to incessant rains for six days. The local administration has already moved residents of several other low-lying areas of the district that are also facing the same situation. The photo was taken yesterday. Star Mail Photo

Excessive rainfall in the northern, north-eastern and south-eastern parts of Bangladesh and the adjacent states of India has triggered floods in many areas of 17 districts of the country. Six days of heavy rain and onrush of upstream waters have flooded low-lying areas of Sunamganj, Sylhet, Chattogram, Feni, Netrakona, Rangput, Nilphamari, Kurigram, Gaibandha, Chandpur, Barishal, Bogura, Sirajganj, Jamalpur, Sherpur, Tangail and Manikganj districts.

The flood situation is worsening and hundreds of families have already been marooned in many areas, according to disaster management and relief ministry sources. Relief materials and cash have been allocated in each flood affected district. Against this backdrop, the disaster management and relief ministry will hold an emergency meeting at the secretariat today (Friday).

The waters of the Teesta, Jamuna, Surma, Kushiyara, Jadukata, Rokti, Boulai, Kangsha, Manu, Khowai, Feni, Haldha, Matamuhuri and the Sangu are flowing above the danger level at several points, according to the Flood Forecasting and Warning Centre (FFWC).

Six days of heavy rain and onrush of upstream waters have flooded five upazilas in Sunamganj in north-eastern Bangladesh. Rising water has inundated low-lying areas of Sadar, Tahirpur, Doarabazar, Biswambharpur and Jamalganj. The swelling Surma, Jadukata, Rokti, Boulai, Kangsha and several other rivers have submerged settlements and roads in adjacent areas near the border.

According to the Bangladesh Water Development Board (WDB) the Surma river at the Shologhor point was flowing 84cm above the danger level at 9am yesterday. The met office also reported 168mm

of rainfall in the last 24 hours. Md Abu Bakar Siddique, executive engineer at the WDB, said: “Heavy rain, coupled with upstream waters, has raised the levels of rivers and haors, submerging adjacent areas.”

In response, Sunamganj relief and rehabilitation officer Md Fazlur Rahman said 300 tonnes of rice and 1,265 packets of dry food have been supplied at 11 upazilas.

“Every family will get 30kg of rice. An additional 200 tonnes of rice and Tk. 3 lakh have been kept in stock,” he added.

In Feni, huge standing crops and “kancha” houses have been damaged at Fulgazi and Pashuram upazilas due to the onrush of hill waters from the upstream.

Deputy director of agricultural extension, Jahan Uddin, said they have estimated that standing crops with vegetables on 3,000 hectare have been damaged.

The major flood affected areas are Saldar, Mali Pathor , Nilaghi, Darpara and Fulgazi bazaar in Fulgazi upazila, and Ratanpur, Durgapur, Mirzanagor, Chitolia, Municipality in Parshuram upazila.

The Feni district administration informed that about 28,000 people have so far been marooned in two upzilas due to flood waters.

In Chandpur, the erosion by the Meghna river has intensified in Amtoli and Jaliarchar areas in Haimchar upazila for the past few days, as the river is rising due to torrential rain across the country.

As a result, the flood control and river bank protection embankment, built at a cost of Tk. 300 crore, is under severe threat.

Upazila chairman Noor Hossain Patwary, UNO Haimchar Ferdousi Begum and Chandpur WDB’s executive engineer Abu Rayhan visited the  erosion points at Amtoli and Jaliarchar areas.

In Jamalpur, five villages of the district in Bakshiganj upazila have been flooded due to torrential rain and upstream waters. The villages have been flooded due to breaching of the embankment constructed near the border of Dhanua Kamalpur union.

Upazila nirbahi officer Dewan Mohammad Tajul Islam said the embankment will be repaired within the shortest possible time. In Lalmonirhat, at least 12,000 people have so far been marooned due to flood waters.

The Teesta and Dharla are flowing 5-7cm above the danger level at Duani and Kulaghat points, respectively.

Dahagram of Patgram, Saniajan, Goddimari, Sirnduna, Patikapara, Dawabari, Singimari, Kaligan of Hatibandha, Bhotmari and Kakina of Kaliganj, Mohishkhocha of Aditmari and Khuniagach, Rajpur, Gokunda, Kulaghat and Mogholhat of Sadar upazila have been affected due to onrush of upstream waters.

The flood affected 12,000 people are yet to get any relief material.

“We have stock of about 950 packets of dry food, 150 tonnes of rice and Tk 2.5 lakh in cash. We will allocate relief materials after getting the list from the upazila administration,” district relief officer Ali Haider told this correspondent.

Executive engineer of the WDB at Dalia point, Rabiul Islam, said the Teesta was flowing 5cm above the danger level at 6am yesterday.

“Low-lying areas adjacent to the river have been flooded. We have opened all the gates to protect the barrage from the pressure of the river water,” he said in reply to a query.

In Gaibandha, the Teesta, Brahmaputra, Jamuna, Karotoa and Ghagot are rising due to heavy rainfall and onrush of water from the upstream. As a result, erosion has taken a serious turn in many areas alongside the rivers.

Many low-lying areas, including charlands of Sundarganj, Phuchori, Saghata and Sadar upazilas, are going under flood waters.

Belka, Tarapur, Haripur, Kapasia and Sripur in Sundarganj upazila, Kamarjani. Mollarchar and Phulchori in Gaibandha Sadar and Arendabari, Fazlupur, Kanchipara, Gazaria and Uria in Phulchori upazila have been flooded.

When contacted, deputy secretary (relief) of the disaster management and relief ministry, Syed Nurul Basir, told The Independent that they have allocated 200-300 tonnes of rice, Tk 2-5 lakh in cash and adequate dry food to each district.

According to the FFWC, the axis of monsoon trough runs through Punjab, Haryana, Uttar Pradesh, Bihar, Sub-Himalayan West Bengal to Assam across the northern part of Bangladesh. One of its associated trough extends up to the North Bay. Monsoon is active over Bangladesh and is moderate over the North Bay.

Light to moderate rain is likely to occur at most places in Rangpur, Mymensingh, Chattogram, Sylhet and Barishal divisions, and at many places in Rajshahi, Dhaka and Khulna divisions, with moderately heavy to very heavy falls at other places in the country.

IK