The overall flood situation in northern districts including Lalmonirhat, Kurigram, Sirajganj, Jamalpur and Gaibandha has worsened further following the gushing water from the upstream and incessant rains, leaving hundreds of thousands of people stranded.
The floodwaters have inundated fresh areas of the four districts, halting academic activities at hundreds of educational institutions.
Water levels of all the rivers including Brahmaputra, Teesta, Dharla, Jamuna and Dudhkumar in the districts continued to rise due to the onrush of water and heavy downpour.
In Lalmonirhat, over 100,000 people of the Teesta basin were trapped in floodwaters. At least 36 villages of 16 unions under Hatibandha, Kaliganj, Aditmari and Sadar upazilas have remained under water for the past four days.
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Flood-hit people have taken shelter at a primary school DHAKA TRIBUNE
Also, thousands of families were marooned in floodwaters as embankments in Kutirpar area in Aditmari upazila broke down, reports our Lalmonirhat correspondent.
The water of the Teesta was flowing 30cm above the danger level at Kulaghat point and 13cm lower from the red mark at Dalia point on Wednesday morning. On the other hand, the Darla river was flowing 25cm above the danger zone, Aminur Rashid, sub assistant engineer of Bangladesh Water Development Board(BWDB) , told the Dhaka Tribune.
BWDB Executive Engineer (Dalia division) Mostafizur Rahman said the flow of water has decreased slightly as India closed 10 gates of its Gojaldoba Barrage. To control the flooding, the Teesta Barrage Authorities have opened all gates of the barrage at Dalia point, according to sources at the BWDB’s local office.
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Houses inundated with floodwaters in Sirajganj DHAKA TRIBUNE
As the flood-affected people are suffering much because of lack of drinking water, sanitation, food and shelters, the local administration distributed relief goods among 17,258 families and provided Tk6 lakh in cash to the victims on Monday and Wednesday.
The sufferers, however, claimed that government relief goods did not reach people in 63 chars (shoals).
In Kurigram, fresh areas went under water due to the increase in water levels of all the rivers, including the Brahmaputra, Teesta, Dharla and Dudhkumar.
The Brahmaputra was flowing 32cm above the danger level at Chilmari point while the Dharala 25cm above the danger mark at the Bridge point, adds our correspondent in the district.
More than 200,000 people of over 250 villages, including chars of 35 unions, under Ulipur, Chilmari, Roumari, Rajibpur, Nageshwari and Sadar upazilas were hit hard by the flood. The scarcity of food and drinking water has turned acute , and waterborne diseases were spreading fast in the flood-hit areas.
More than 150 educational institutions were shut down following the flood, locals said, adding that 771 hectares of cropland were inundated.
Deputy Commissioner of Kurigram Abu Saleh Mohammad Ferdous Khan said some 250 tonnes of rice and Tk5 lakh in cash were allocated for the flood-affected people. “All preparations have been taken to face the flood situation.” he said.
In Sirajganj, as water level in the jamuna river rose by 18cm, the flooding in five upazilas — Kazipur, Shahzadpur, Belkuchi, Chouhali and Sadar – has taken a serious turn following the rise in water level of the Jamuna river, adding to the victims’ woes. Many areas went under water as the Jamuna water was flowing 67cm above the red mark, report our Sirajganj correspondent.
Mizanur Rahman, monitoring officer at the district primary education office, said some 167 primary schools were either completely or partially inundated there, causing the authorities to carry out academic activities in elevated areas.
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Locals taking care of a dam to protect Lalmonirhat town from the devastating floods on Wednesday DHAKA TRIBUNE
The local administration has so far distributed relief materials among 14,816 families in the five upazilas, where some 5,000 houses were completely or partially damaged by the floodwaters. The number of affected-people is constantly increasing, according to sources at the local office of the Department of Relief and Rehabilitation.
Local Government Division Deputy Director Abu Noor Mohammed Shamsuddin said relief workers had to encounter huge obstacles in their way to some of the affected areas as roads were severely damaged there.
In Jamalpur, six unions of Islampur, Dewanganj, Madarganj and Sarishabari upazilas newly went under water as the Jamuna river was flowing 78cm above the danger level at Bahadurabad Ghat point, adds our correspondent in the district.
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People walking in knee-deep floodwaters in Sirajganj DHAKA TRIBUNE
Besides, 77 hectares of seedbeds, 133 hectares of Aus paddy and 449 hectares of vegetable fields were inundated in Islampur, Dewanganj and Sarishabari upazilas, said Abu Hanif, training officer at the local Department of Agricultural Extension. The local administration has, meanwhile, allocated 130 tonnes of rice and Tk2.2 lakh in cash for the flood-hit people in four upazilas of the district.
Some 77 medical teams have been formed so far, said Civil Surgeon Dr Md Mushair-ul-Islam (Ratan) adding that a team was working in each union.
District Education Officer (Secondary) of Jamalpur Mokhlesur Rahman said second terminal examinations have been postponed at 29 high schools and madrasas in six upazilas of the district.
Moreover, some 119 government primary schools were declared shut down in the six upazila for floodwaters, said district primary education officer Md Shahidul Islam.
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Lalmonirhat Deputy Commissioner Abul Fazal Mohammad Alauddin Khan, accompanied bym others, distributing relief goods among flood-affected people in Hatibandha upazila of the district on Wednesday DHAKA TRIBUNE
In Gaibandha, the Brahmaputra river is flowing 55cm above the danger level, worsening the flood situation, reports our correspondent it the district.
Stranded in floodwaters, over 200,000 people of four upazilas – Sundarganj, Phulchhari, Shaghata and Sadar – are suffering from an acute food crisis. Some 132 educational institutions in the district were temporarily shut down as they have been inundated over the last some days.
District Relief and Rehabilitation Officer Md Idirs Ali said they had so far distributed 90 metric tonnes of rice and Tk6 lakh among the victims.
Bangladesh Bank’s directives
Bangladesh Bank has, meanwhile, directed all the commercial banks to provide money and relief items to the flood-hit people across the country, including those in the in the northern region.
The directive came on Wednesday in the form of a circular aimed at all managing directors and chief executive officers of the banks.
The central bank asked the commercial banks to take steps under their corporate social responsibility to provide the victims with necessary items including money, food, clothes, drinking water, portable stove, portable solar lanterns, etc.
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