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Rains wreak havoc in north eastern states

By, Silchar/imphal/shillong
May 08, 2024 08:22 AM IST

In Assam, at least five people died due to lightning in Cachar district and some other areas, while one Tripura resident died in Assam’s Dima Hasao district last week

Heavy rainfall and hailstorms that continued for about a week in the northeastern states has claimed several lives and caused large-scale property damage, official records show.

Rains wreak havoc in north eastern states
Rains wreak havoc in north eastern states

In Assam, at least five people died due to lightning in Cachar district and some other areas, while one Tripura resident died in Assam’s Dima Hasao district last week.

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In Barpeta district, a 60-year-old lady and her 20-year-old daughter died on Sunday due to a lightning strike. The deceased, Momiron Nessa (60) and Joshna Khatun (20), were working outside their house when the lightning strike happened, according to officials of the district disaster management authority (DDMA).

An 11-year-old boy from the family, Iqbal Hussain, also sustained injuries. They were taken Barpeta civil hospital, where the doctors declared the women dead, police said.

In Cachar district, two boys died last week due to lightning strike. Two other boys sustained injuries and are undergoing treatment at Silchar Medical College and Hospital.

On May 2, a bus travelling from Agartala to Guwahati met with an accident in landslide-affected Dima Hasao district’s Ditokcherra in which a 27-year-old Tripura resident identified as D Devburman died. Around 30 other passengers sustained injuries and six among them were shifted to a government hospital.

The Barak valley in Assam, along with Tripura, Manipur and Mizoram, were partially disconnected by road and railways from the rest of the country due to multiple landslides in Dima Hasao and Meghalaya for the entire week.

Several trains were cancelled because railway tracks were damaged, according to officials of Northeast Frontier Railway. However, trains stranded in various stations were passed through after the initial repairs.

The tracks were damaged by the heavy flow of mud in several areas and restoration work was being carried out, railway officials said.

“Our teams are on the spot, but due to incessant rainfall, we are not able to work. Several trains from Barak valley and Tripura, which were stuck in Dima Hasao, have been passed. We haven’t cancelled the other scheduled trains but, considering the situation, some have been rescheduled,” an official said, seeking anonymity.

There would be heavy rainfall accompanied by thunderstorms and gusty winds in Assam and neighbouring states till May 11, the India Meteorological Department predicted on Sunday.

This additional rainfall may worsen the situation in the coming days, officials of local administrations in Assam said. Several districts, including Dima Hasao, Barpeta and Dibrugarh, have issued public warnings.

The situation was under control but considering the weather forecast, the district administration has advised citizens to stay at home and avoid travelling, according to Simanta Kumar Das district commissioner of Dima Hasao. “We are well-equipped to face any further situation. As of now, things are under control. From the Haflong municipality to other departments, all are alert. Assam Rifles and other security agencies are also ready,” he said.

In Manipur, one person died and two sustained injuries after they were struck by lightning during rains on Sunday. The deceased has been identified as H Nilakanta (45), a resident of Yangdong Awang Leikai in Manipur’s Kakching district.

As many as 15,425 houses have been severely damaged in Manipur so far, official data showed. “The government has taken up many measures through the deputy commissioners concerned,” chief minister N Biren Singh said on Monday evening.

There was property damage in parts of Imphal West, Imphal East, Bishnupur,Thoubal and Churachandpur districts. Around 6,053 houses were damaged in Imphal West, 5,600 in Imphal East,1,079 in Bishnupur, 800 in Thoubal,120 in Kakching,100 in Kamjong, 540 in Churachandpur, 100 in Noney, 292 in Kangpokpi, 16 in Chandel and 275 in Tengnoupal.

In Mizoram, around 500 houses were damaged due to storms followed by heavy rainfall, according to official records. At least seven districts, including Aizawl, Lunglei, Champhai, were affected by the natural calamity, disaster management authorities said.

About a thousand people in 29 villages have lost houses, they said. The state government has asked the district administrations to take necessary action on relief distribution and assistance to the affected people.

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