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Saturday, Dec 14, 2019

‘What happened in America?’: Nitish Kumar counters critics on Bihar floods

At least 40 people have died due to heavy rain in Bihar with state capital Patna among the worst-affected.

india Updated: Oct 02, 2019 13:13 IST
HT Correspondent
HT Correspondent
Hindustan Times, Patna
Bihar Chief Minister Nitish Kumar meets with flood-affected residents in Patna.
Bihar Chief Minister Nitish Kumar meets with flood-affected residents in Patna.(PTI photo)
         

Bihar chief minister Nitish Kumar visited relief camps in the flood hit state on Tuesday. Facing protests by the public and questions by journalists, he lost his cool and said floods happen across India and around the world.

“Is water in some parts of Patna the only problem we have? What happened in America?” Kumar said on Tuesday evening.

At least 40 people have died due to heavy rain in Bihar with state capital Patna among the worst-affected. The rain abated on Tuesday but waterlogging continues to be a major worry.

Also read: Bihar floods, Defunct sump houses made things ugly in Patna

Kumar, who was visiting a relief camp in Patna, said that no one in the government is sitting idle. He added that floods are a natural calamity worsened by climate change.

Teams of National Disaster Response Force have been deployed in Patna’s Rajendra Nagar and Kankarbagh areas, among the worst hit.

Watch: Bihar floods: CM Nitish Kumar takes stock of situation, loses cool at media 

Deputy chief minister Sushil Modi and his family were stranded on Monday after flood entered his house in Patna. They were rescued by disaster response teams.

Nitish Kumar has also been targeted by ally BJP over the flood situation in Bihar. Senior BJP leader and union minister Giriraj Singh, known Nitish baiter, people are suffering due to the fault of the state government.

Singh directly blamed Nitish Kumar-led NDA government and its callous attitude for the worst waterlogging in Patna and floods in the state. He said there is a loot in the name of relief in flood-hit areas.

Bihar BJP president Sanjay Jaiswal accused the administration of negligence in dealing with the situation. “Although rain stopped 24 hours ago, the waterlogging still persists. This shows that there has been administrative negligence,” Jaiswal wrote on Facebook.

The Rashtriya Janata Dal, Bihar’s the main opposition party, alleged that the there was “massive corruption” in drainage projects in the state and demanded a white paper from the government.

20 NDRF teams have been pressed into service in the flood-hit state. Six of these teams were deployed in Patna.

Two helicopters of the Indian Air Force have been deployed to carry out relief and rescue operations.