2.71 lakh in 321 villages affected

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1st wave of flood claims one in Assam

HT Bureau

GUWAHATI, May 27: One person died in the first wave of floods, which affected as many as 2.71 lakh people in 11 districts throughout the state on Wednesday.

One person drowned in flood waters at Rongia in Kamrup district, according to the report of Assam State Disaster Management Authority (ASDMA) here.

A total of 2,71,655 people of 321 villages under 21 revenue circles of Dhemaji, Lakhimpur, Nagaon, Hojai, Darrang, Barpeta, Nalbari, Goalpara, West Karbi Anglong, Dibrugarh and Tinsukia districts have been affected by floods, the report said.

Nearly 16,700 flood affected people have taken shelter at 57 relief camps set up by the district administration.

Over 2.15 lakh people have been affected alone in Goalpara district followed by 22,332 people in Nalbari district.

The water level of Brahmaputra river at Neamatighat in Jorhat district, JiaBharali river in Sonitpur district and Puthimari river in Kamrup district are flowing above danger level mark.

A total of 2,678 hectares crop area has been submerged by flood waters and nearly 28,300 domestic animals and 9350 poultry affected.

On Tuesday, portions of eight embankments, several roads, bridges, culverts have been damaged by the flood waters of Brahmaputra and its tributaries in many places of the state.

Meanwhile, chief minister Sarbananda Sonowal reviewed flood situation in the state at a meeting with the officials of Assam State Disaster Management Authority (ASDMA) and top officials of various other departments at Assam Administrative Staff College.

The chief minister directed for ensuring all COVID-19 protocols like social distancing, hand washing, wearing of masks etc. at the flood relief camps so that community spread of COVID-19 cases can be contained during the flood season.

Issuing instruction to deputy commissioners of all districts to keep soap and water for hand washing, masks for inmates while properly sanitizing the flood relief camps, Sonowal directed district administrations to ensure that no irregularities take place while distributing relief materials. He also issued directions for releasing of ex-gratia within 48 hours by district administration for those losing life in floods.

He also instructed the DCs to regularly review the relief distribution system so that accountability can be fixed if any irregularity takes place. He also stressed on the need to keep an information board in all relief camps showing details of how much relief materials have been received by every individual inmate.

The chief minister directed the power department to cut off power in all those transformers submerged in floods so that no case of electrocution takes place during the floods. On being apprised about the LEWS advanced lightning warning system of ASDMA which can give a warning of impending lightning before 45 minutes, Sonowal instructed the department to use the system to reduce number of casualties in the state because of lightning.

Directing the PWD to take steps for repairing 157 roads damaged by floods in 8 districts, the chief minister instructed the water resources department to keep a stock of materials such as RCC Porcupine, bamboo, sand bags etc. in all districts for taking immediate measures to safeguard the areas affected by erosion.

He also asked the officials of water resources department to go to the public and make them aware about delay in construction of embankments due to lockdown and heavy rainfall in the month of May. It is the duty of the government servants to hear the complaints of the people and assuage their grievances, he said. The chief minister also directed the ASDMA officials to disseminate information through advertisements in various media about the do’s and don’ts during floods, lightning, storm etc.

During the meeting the chief minister was apprised that an amount of Rs 386 crore has been released by Central Government as the first installment this year to State Disaster Relief Fund (SDRF) and the Chief Minister emphasized proper utilization of the fund for providing succour to those affected by flood in the state.

He also directed the Inland Water department to take precautionary measures to avoid boat mishaps during the rainy season and strictly enforce wearing of masks by crews and the passengers of ferries and the boats.

The chief minister instructed the veterinary department to provide cattle feed to the domestic animals in the flood affected areas and also provide food to the wild animals in Kaziranga National Park and other such flood affected wildlife sanctuaries.

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