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Bihar: Too much water

July 21, 2004

Over two crore (20 million) people have been affected and 138 lives have been lost in the floods, which have hit Bihar's northern districts since the first week of July. All major rivers, including the Ganga, Gandhak, Kosi and Bagmati, are flowing above the danger mark.

Army personnel and helicopters have been deployed for rescue and relief operations but overall authorities have been finding it difficult to help affected people owing to the magnitude of the problem and their lack of preparation.

Some people did benefit though: 30 prisoners took advantage of the floods to escape from Darbhanga Jail.

Floods are a perennial problem in the state. Most of the water comes from rivers flowing through neighbouring Nepal. But India has not been able to thrash out a solution to this problem with the Himalayan kingdom.

Ruling Rashtriya Janata Dal chief and Union Railway Minister Lalu Prasad on July 16 announced that people in the flood-ravaged areas would be provided with foodgrains free of cost till the next cropping season. He should not have much trouble keeping that promise since the central United Progressive Alliance government is headed by its ally, the Congress party.

Meanwhile, the people of Bihar are waiting for the rivers to calm down and the waters to subside so they can piece together the parts of their lives.

Photograph: Getty Images

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Number of User Comments: 5

Sub: Bihar flood

At one hand we are claiming that by 2020 we will be a developed country but do we have any road map to reach there? ...

Posted by neeraj

Sub: Bihar Flood

In Bihar many people loss their life because of flood. In southern india, TN and Karnataka area fighting due to water scarcity. Planning Commision need ...

Posted by Siva

Sub: bihar floods

Its really so sad, that 20 million people are on road. India should have a proper plan to handle this kind of situations, like other ...

Posted by aruntaman

Sub: water

its time we all ask the govt to increase the speed on the decision of river linking and table the cost and time and the ...

Posted by s

Sub: It's a Shame

It is a sheme. Every year the North and the East are flooded and the south is left parched. We plant to be a developed ...

Posted by Sundar


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