70,000 people marooned as new flash floods hit Lalmonirhat | The Daily Star
04:53 PM, July 11, 2020 / LAST MODIFIED: 05:04 PM, July 11, 2020

70,000 people marooned as new flash floods hit Lalmonirhat

Hundreds of chars and low-lying areas along the Teesta and Dharla Rivers have been inundated as Teesta waters began flowing above danger level since yesterday afternoon, leaving around 70,000 people of 17 unions of Lalmonirhat district marooned.

"Around 70,000 people of 17 unions of Lalmonirhat district are caught in water as Teesta river has been crossing the danger level since yesterday," said Abdul Quader, sub-divisional engineer of Lalmonirhat Water Development Board (WDB).

The water of the river Teesta is flowing at 24 cm above the danger level at Dowani point of Teesta Barrage in Hatibandha upazila of Lalmonirhat since from 6:00am today, he said.

The Teesta water level continues to rise due to incessant rains and water from upstream India, our Lalmonirhat correspondent reports quoting the WDB official.

All gates of Teesta Barrage have been opened due to the pressure of upstream water, he said.

On the other hand, the water of Dharla River is flowing touching the danger level due to rain and upstream water at Shimulbari point of Lalmonirhat Sadar upazila this morning.

The water level of Teesta River was rising and it was flowing 35 cm above the danger level last night, said Abdul Quader, adding that the water level has decreased a bit during night and has been flowing around 24 cm of the danger level since this morning.

The waters of the Teesta and Dharla Rivers could rise further in the next 24 hours as rains and upstream water continued, he feared.

He added that hundreds of chars and low-lying areas along the Teesta and Dharla Rivers have been inundated due to rising water levels.

Thousands of Teesta River shoal people are worried about the second flood, the official said.

Although many people are at home in waterlogged conditions, people from remote char areas are taking shelter in safe places with cows, goats, ducks, chickens and other necessities, he said.

Jobeda Bewa (63), of Teesta River Char Khuniagachh of Lalmonirhat Sadar Upazila, said she was moving to a safe shelter by boat this morning as the river water had risen in her house. Her son and other family members took shelter on Friday night. They had suffered severe damage in another flood as they did not recover from the first flood, she said.

Majeda Begum (28), of Kalmati area of Teesta River shoal in Lalmonirhat Sadar Upazila, said the water of the Teesta had risen from house to house and flooded the roads, so they were in dire straits.

"Due to flood waters, we could not stay at home and could not move. The family members have taken to the street with cows, goats, ducks, chickens and necessary furniture and they will return home when the water recedes," she said.

Fazlar Rahman (55), a farmer at Char Gobordhan in Aditmari upazila, said that the people of Teesta and Dharla Rivers shoal have been severely affected by the floods as they could not recover from the damage caused by first phase flood.

"Char farmers in particular are the most affected. The first phase flood caused a lot of damage to crops and the rest was lost in the second flood," he said.

Mosaddek Hossain, chairman of the Mahishkhocha Union Parishad in Aditmari Upazila, told The Daily Star that 70 per cent of his union area was flooded.

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