West Bengal Chief Minister Buddhadev Bhattacharjee on Friday described the flood situation in the twin districts of Midnapore as 'very bad' with at least 25 dead and 22 lakh people affected.
While 17 blocks have been flooded in West Midnapore, 15 blocks were affected in East Midnapore, of which six were in very bad shape, the chief minister told newspersons after a meeting with senior officials in Kolaghat.
Of the 22 lakh people affected, 16 lakh were from West Midnapore and the rest from its coastal twin.
He said that the army, which had been called in to assist in relief and rescue operations, was working in the worst-affected areas and also air-dropping dry food, water pouches and medicines from helicopters.
"In West Midnapore, the worst-affected areas are Sabang and Narayangarh. At least two lakh people are in 822 relief camps," he said, adding that crops worth crores and 16,000 houses have been destroyed.
In East Midnapore, Patashpur, Bhagabanpur I and II blocks and Egra were the worst affected and 2.5 lakh people had taken shelter in 60 relief camps.
He said the floods had been caused by the unusual heavy rainfall at the onset of the monsoon, while asserting that relief would be given to all who are in need without considering their political affiliation.
Allegations have been made from certain quarters in both the districts that political colour was being considered in distribution of relief material.