Bihar flood: 25 killed, over 2.5mn affected

Patna, July 16 (IANS) Chief Minister Nitish Kumar on Tuesday confirmed 25 deaths due to flood in Bihar. The situation continues to remain grim with over 2.5 million people affected, officials said.
Nitish Kumar had carried out an aerial survey of the flood-affected Seemanchal and Koshi regions on Sunday and Monday. He told the Assembly on Tuesday that relief and rescue operations were underway.
“More relief camps would be set up if needed,” he said during the ongoing Monsoon session.
A total of 26 teams of the National Disaster Response Force (NDRF) and State Disaster Response Force (SDRF) have been deployed in the 12 flood-hit districts of the state. At least 1,25,000 people have been moved to safer areas, the Chief Minister told the House.
Nitish Kumar said other than the 199 relief camps that had been set up, some 676 community kitchens were providing food to the people residing at these camps and elsewhere.
The Chief Minister also informed that the flood had damaged 335 rural roads and some small bridges, and added that he had directed officials to arrange fodder for the cattle as well as compensation for loss of crops and animals.
Since Monday, all the major rivers in Bihar have been flowing above the danger mark, leading to embankment breaches. There were also reports of fresh floods in three new districts of Saharsa, Katihar and Purnea.
Dozens of villages have been inundated, forcing people flee their homes and seek shelter at safer places, a disaster management official said. In the worst-hit Sitamarhi and Araria districts, roads have also been damaged.
The flood were caused by heavy rain in north Bihar and the catchment areas of major rivers in neighbouring Nepal.
However, Water Resources Department officials said the water level in rivers originating in Nepal was likely to decrease as rain in those areas had stopped.

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