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Army on standby as Bihar flood situation worsens
July 29, 2007 15:42 IST
The army has been kept standby as the overall flood situation in Bihar is likely to further worsen with water level of major rivers, already above danger level, further rising with heavy rains in their catchment areas inundating fresh areas in the 11 affected districts.
State disaster management sources said as the situation was deteriorating, the government had written letters to the authorities at the Danapur cantonment here asking them to keep army boats and helicopters ready for intensifying the relief and rescue operations.
Two army helicopters were ready in Lucknow to fly to the affected areas within 20 minutes of receiving the notice from Patna, they said.
Bihar Governor R S Gavai had directed the ministers and legislators of the flood-affected districts to remain present and supervise distribution of flood relief among the flood-hit people and the flood-protect works being carried out by the engineers of the state water resource department in their respective constituencies.
Gavai also directed the state government to supply adequate quantity of medicines required for treating diarrhea and dysentery in the flood-hit areas, a Rajbhavan spokesman said, adding the state health department had also been asked to make available anti-poison serum to help treat cases of snake bites.
The Muzaffapur district administration had sent SOS to the state government requesting deployment of army personnel to augment relief and rehabilitation operation in its most affected blocks, including Aurai.
Around 25 people have lost their lives in the current spell of floods in Bihar, which have so far caused extensive damage to the private and public property worth over Rs 1.10 crore, sources said.
570 boats were pressed into service to evacuate the marooned people to safer places, while several relief and medical camps were functional in the affected districts, including Sitamarhi Muzaffarpur, Darbhanga, east and west Champaran, Saharsa, Supaul and Gopalganj to provide succour to the affected people, they said.
According to central water commission sources, Punpun was flowing 132 cm above the danger level at Sripalpur and rising further due to rains.
Bagmati was flowing 86 cm above the danger mark at Benibad, 46 cm at Hayaghat and water level of Kamala Balan was above the danger mark at Jhanjharpur 173 cm, Kosi at Basua (61 cm), Baltara (113 cm), while Mahananda was flowing above the danger mark at Dhegra Ghat (97 cm) and Jhawa (29 cm), they added.
Meanwhile, swirling waters of swollen Bagmati, Kamla Bala and Burhi Gandak overtopped the highways at different places snapping road communication between Muzaffarpur and Darbhanga, Mufaffarpur and Sitamarhi, Muzaffarpur and Motihari, Sitamarhi and Madhubani and Darbhanga and Madhubani, sources said.
Flood waters also entered some wards in Darbhanga, Sitamarhi and Madhubani towns, forcing several families to rush to safer places, they said.
Arrangements were being made for additional boats for helping the people in affected areas in the towns to reach safer places.