More than 50 killed in monsoon-triggered floods in India

Persistent heavy rains during the monsoon season in India have triggered floods that have caused the deaths of more than 50 people, leaving thousands more sheltering in makeshift camps.

Photo by: AFP
Photo by: AFP

Indian residents wade through floodwaters in Siliguri on July 24, 2016

More than 50 people have died and millions have been affected from monsoon-triggered floods in eastern India this week, home minister Rajnath Singh said on Saturday.

Rivers have burst their banks, flooding villages in the northeastern tea-growing state of Assam where 26 people have died, Home Minister Rajnath Singh said, after carrying out an aerial survey of the worst-affected districts.

The state of Assam has managed to save more than 6,000 lives thus far as people were sheltering in makeshift camps set up along highways and on higher ground in the flood-ravaged state.

"I have been informed that nearly 26 people have died due to floods in a week, in the last seven days. Nearly 3.7 million people have been affected in more than 28 districts," Singh said.

Indian municipal cooperation workers clear water from a main road in Gurgaon on the outskirts of New Delhi on July 30, 2016/Source: AFP

Severe floods have also killed 26 people in the state of Bihar and an additional several thousand people have been displaced, the Press Trust of India news agency reported Friday.

During his visit in Assam and Bihar states, Singh described the situation as "really grim" adding that the disaster response team is doing all they can to assist citizens. 

"No efforts are being spared to help the people," said Singh.

"The National Disaster Response Force (NDRF) and army are doing their best. Some 60 boats have been pressed into service to rescue people," he continued. 

According to a report from the Assam State Disaster Management Authority, 240,680 have been displaced in the state.

Indian villagers travel on a raft in the flood-affected Sildubi village in Morigoan district, in India’s northeastern state of Assam on July 28, 2016.

“Life has been very difficult here for the people, especially for the kids. We have been taking shelter here on a temporary relief camp for the last seven days,” Rajeev Gogoi, a father of two whose home in Assam was affected by the floods, told Anadolu Agency.

Scores of people die every year from flooding and landslides during the monsoon rains in India and neighbouring countries of Nepal and Bangladesh.  

TRTWorld and agencies