Komen aftermath: At least 88 killed in floods across 4 states

  • HT Correspondent, Hindustan Times, Kolkata/Imphal/Bhubaneswar/Jaipur
  • Updated: Aug 03, 2015 07:26 IST

At least 88 people were killed and more than a million evacuated as heavy rainfall lashed across several Indian states through the weekend after cyclone Komen created a depression over Bangladesh.

West Bengal, Manipur, Rajasthan and Odisha were the hardest hit and the death toll could rise as many people were missing, officials said. The Indian Army is out in several areas for rescue and relief efforts.

Seven deaths were reported from West Bengal on Sunday, taking the toll over the past week to 48. More than 3.6 million people in 9,691 villages across 12 districts of West Bengal were affected by floods and waterlogging. More than 1.1 million people were moved to relief camps in the state.

"In the last four years there has been no flood like this year's. So far we have witnessed man-made floods and we have restricted them quite successfully. But the situation at present is rendered beyond control," chief minister Mamata Banerjee said.

Excessive rain for the past two days coupled with high tide and water released from Jharkhand and Odisha worsened the situation in the state.

Several roads in the northern and southern parts of Kolkata were under knee-deep water. Arterial roads such as Central Avenue, Park Street, Theatre Road, Hospital Road, Amherst Street and Diamond Harbour Road were waterlogged, causing massive traffic snarls.

At least four children were killed and four other people seriously injured after they were struck by lightning in Barasat in West Bengal's North Paraganas district, police said.

An elderly man was crushed to death after a portion of his house collapsed and a two-year-old was killed in Murshidabad district when a wall collapsed.

Home minister Rajnath Singh is monitoring the situation and minister of state Kiren Rijiju is expected to visit the affected areas to oversee relief work.

The weather office said cyclone Komen, which made landfall in Bangladesh on Thursday, remained practically stationary there and weakened into a depression. The weather phenomenon would move west and gradually weaken into a well-marked low-pressure area, officials said.

In Manipur, 20 people were killed in a single village swept away by a landslide in Chandel district on the Myanmar border. Rescuers reached the crushed village, 80km from state capital Imphal, after being flown by helicopter and then trekking across blocked roads.

Three persons, one each from Chandel, Thoubal and Churachandpur districts drowned in last three days, police said.

Dozens of houses were destroyed in Hollenjang, Wayang and Tuitung villages and several areas in and around Imphal were flooded as rivers flowed above the danger mark.


Army personnel help people affected by floods following incessant rainfall in Imphal. (PTI Photo)

In Rajasthan, 12 people have died over the past few days , taking the death toll in over a week of heavy rainfall and floods to 28.

The state experienced excessive rainfall in most of its districts.The situation is "grim" particularly in districts of Jalore, Jhalawar, Baran, Sirohi, Barmer and Dungarpur, officials said.

Apart from the State Disaster Response Force and RAC, eight teams of National Disaster Response Force (NDRF) have been deployed for rescue and relief operations.

Around 10 villages in Odisha were marooned and nearly 479,000 people were affected across the state but the situation was less alarming than that in West Bengal.

Five people lost their lives and 644 villages and 4,80,399 people were affected. 1574 people have been evacuated to safer places, an official statement said.

"All the major rivers in Odisha are flowing below the danger level. However, inflow of rain water from West Bengal, where heavy rainfall occurred under the effect of cyclonic system Komen, has left some villages in Balasore district marooned," special relief commissioner GVV Sarma said.

Gujarat: Death toll rises to 53

The death toll in Gujarat, which saw heavy monsoon rains earlier last week, has risen to 53.

"The death toll has reached 53 including 28 deaths in worst-hit Banaskantha district," said state emergency control room officials. 14 districts and a population of about 40 lakh were affected.

More than 10 lakh food packets have been airdropped or distributed to the flood victims. Temporary relief camps have been set up in affected areas and people accommodated on need basis, the statement said.


In pics | Floods across 3 states, army conducts rescue operations

Komen triggers heavy rains; 70 dead in Bengal, Manipur, Odisha

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