Upsurge of water level in Ganges basin worsens flood, death toll reaches 12

Publish: 6:09 PM, July 27, 2020 | Update: 6:09:PM, July 27, 2020

RAJSHAHI, – Unremitting rise of water level of the most rivers in the Ganges Basins triggered by onrush of water from upper catchment for the last couple of days further worsened the flood situation in the region which left 12 persons dead .

Of the total 30 river points after monitored in Ganges Basin regularly, water levels increased at 19 stations, while decreased at eight stations and remained stable at three points at 9 am today aggravating the flood situation in the char (river bed) and other low-lying areas.

But, the rivers were flowing below danger level at 22 points, while six points at above the danger mark this morning.

Local office of Bangladesh Water Development Board (BWDB) has recorded a rising trend of water levels in almost all points like Pankha, Rajshahi, Hardinge Bridge, Talbaria, Goalunda and Mawa in the past 24 hours ending 9 am today, said Mukhlesur Rahman, Superintending Engineer of BWDB.

Water level of the Ganges River increased by 12 centimetre (CM) at Pankha in Chapainawabganj, eight cm at Rajshahi, three cm at Hardinge Bridge and Talbaria points each while the level in the Padma River increased by two cm each at Goalunda and Mawa points.

But the Ganges River was flowing 163 cm and 171 cm below the danger level at Rajshahi and Pankha points respectively, he added.

Besides, the water level of the Korotoa River and the Jamuna River under the Brahmaputra Basin which flows in Bogura and Sirajganj districts have seen a receding trend this morning creating a forecast of improving the flood situation in the two districts within the next couple of days.

Arifuzzaman Bhuiyan, Executive Engineer of Flood Forecasting and Warning Centre (FFWC), said the water level in the Korotoa River increased by three cm at Bogura point.

The Jamuna River decreased by six cm at Sariakandi in Bogura, seven cm at Kajipur in Sirajgonj and four cm at Sirajgonj point and the river was still flowing 113 cm, 93 cm and 84 cm above the danger mark at Sariakandi, Kazipur and Sirajgonj points respectively this morning.

He also said the water level in Gur River decreased by seven cm at Shingra point in Natore district and the river was flowing 86 cm above the danger mark.

The Atrai River was flowing 111 cm above the danger level at Baghabari point in Sirajganj district with five cm further rise this morning.

Water level in the Mohananda River also increased by five cm at Chapainawabganj point but the river was still flowing 86 cm below the danger mark.

The Atrai River was flowing 25 cm above the danger mark at Atrai point in Naogaon while 242 cm below the danger mark with 53 cm decrease afresh at Mohadevpur point.

Of the 14 river points both in Ganges and Brahmaputra Basins, monitored in almost all eight districts under Rajshahi division, water levels increased at four stations, while decreased at seven stations and stable at three points.

Meanwhile, the Department of Health has adopted all-possible steps to contain any outbreak of water-borne diseases among the marooned people in the flood-affected areas in wake of the novel coronavirus (Covid-19) pandemic.

Divisional Director of Health Dr Gopendra Nath Acharya told BSS that 658 medical teams are working in 55 flood affected unions under 13 upazilas in the division. Besides, 17 flood shelters were opened in Bogura district.

He added that 31 unions in Sirajgonj, 10 in Bogura and five in Natore are the worst affected ones.

We have, so far, received reports of twelve deaths, caused by eight drowning in Sirajgonj and two in Naogaon, while two others by snake bite in Sirajgonj,” Dr Gopen Nath added.

Moinul Islam, Additional Divisional Commissioner of Rajshahi , said the district and upazila administrations with the local public representatives have further intensified relief activities in the worst-affected areas.

He also said the district administrations and BWDB are closely monitoring the situation and taking instant steps when and where necessary during the deluge in Rajshahi division.

Around 5.51 lakh people of 1.38 lakh flood-affected households are getting relief materials in different districts to mitigate their livelihood-related sufferings in the disaster.

The government has been distributing relief materials like 674.15 tonnes of rice, TK 11.44 lakh in cash, TK four lakh for baby food, around 4.25 lakh packets of dry foods and another TK four lakh for cattle-feed in the worst-affected areas of Rajshahi, Natore, Naogaon, Chapainawabganj, Sirajganj and Bogura districts.

The government has also stocks of another 1,484.85 tonnes of rice, TK 34.04 lakh in cash, TK six lakh for baby food, 8,150 packets of dry foods and TK six lakh for cattle feed for all the eight districts in the division to cope with the adverse flood situation.

If necessary, there are also additional relief materials of 1,500 tonnes of rice, TK six lakh for baby food, 15,000 packets of dry food and TK 15 lakh for cattle-feed for Sirajgonj, Bogura and Pabna districts, Mainul Islam added.