Likely cloudburts and heavy end-monsoon precipitation in the Himalayan tracts in the next 72 hours, have raised visions a nightmare situation for lakhs of people in North Bihar, especially Mithila, Champaran's and Kosi division, officials said here on Saturday.
They have sounded a full alert, while asking people to be vigilant and identify safer areas to move to in distress.
The water resources department also sounded out the national disaster response force (NDRF), with chief minister Nitish Kumar asking the Centre for three more batallions, even as relief and rescue operations teams have been asked to be battle ready to move in on short notice.
The moves comes, following an Indian Meteorological Department (IMD) forecast of 'havoc' rainfall (very heavy downpour) in Bihar in the next 72 hours, a threat, which has been communicated to the commissionaries.
“Yes, we have asked our officials as well as the general public to prepare for any eventuality in the light of the IMD's forecast,” said WRD principal secretary Arun Kumar Singh.
Chief Secretary Ashok Kumar Sinha reviewed the situation through video conferencing and directed district magistrates of north Bihar districts to prepare for the scenario with relief and rescue in mind. Director IMD AK Sen was also present at the meeting.
Sen told HT, that as per the latest weather prediction, havoc rainfall would hit the northern districts, particulraly Kishanganj, Araria, Katihar, Supaul, Madhepura, Madhubani, Sitamarhi and east and west champaran between September 9 and September 13. “There will be heavy rainfall on September 8, 9 and 10 and very heavy downpour (up to 300 mm rain) on September 13,” he added.
He said a place called Galgalia in Kishanganj district received a record 280mm rain on Friday and it was expected that the situation would further be intensified in the next four- five days.
He, however, said the rainfall activities would be concentrated only on the northern districts and central and south Bihar districts would experience very little rainfall during the period.
Sen said, the monsoon was moving back from the foothills of the Himalayas towards the mainland areas again. On Saturday, it was located very close to Nepal. Its further movement towards south would cause the expected rainfall, he added.
He completely ruled out cloudbursts in the state but said even if they happened in the foothills of the Himalayan country, Bihar rivers would definitely be affected., “This was the reason, why we have warned the government to prepare for any eventuality.”
Sen said, director general of the Indian Meteorological Department has also predicted havoc rain in the state.
Meanwhile, major rivers in Bihar, including the Ganga maintained a declining trend on Saturday.