Cold weather kills 17 people in Bangladesh
A cold spell sweeping northern Bangladesh left at least 17 people dead in past three days.india Updated: Jan 04, 2007 12:45 IST
A cold spell sweeping northern Bangladesh left at least 17 people dead in past three days while dense fog disrupted public transportation in the region near the Himalayan foothills, news reports said on Thursday.
The deaths were reported in a region where temperatures dropped to 9 degree Celsius, below normal in this impoverished tropical nation, United News of Bangladesh news agency reported.
Most victims were elderly people and children from poor families, the reports said.
Many of the victims suffered from fevers or pneumonia, or died of exposure.
Most Bangladeshi villagers, who live in mud-and-thatch huts and often cannot afford warm clothes, are poorly equipped for colder-than-normal weather.
The temperatures fell below normal since New Year's Day as chilly wind swept the region, shrouded in fog that disrupted traffic, according to the Meteorological Department.
The reports said at least eight people died in Panchagarh district, about 340 kilometres north of the capital, Dhaka.
Nine other people died in the neighboring districts of Thakurgaon, Gaibandha and Kurigram, the new agency said quoting unnamed relief workers.
Government officials in the region were not immediately available for comment.
First Published: Jan 04, 2007 12:45 IST