Hasina asks officials to extend help to flood-hit people

Hasina asks officials to extend help to flood-hit people

DHAKA: Bangladesh Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina has asked the government officials to extend all possible assistance to the people affected by the flood in the country while maintaining a preparedness to deal with any kind of situation, officials said.

At least nine persons have died on Monday due to drowning and snake bites in the northwestern and central parts of the country, Health Emergency Operations Centre and Control Room of the Department of Health said.

Besides, 17 districts of Bangladesh have been affected by flood and 20 rivers were flowing above danger level, said the report of Flood Forecasting and Warning Centre (FFWC) on Monday. Hasina had attended a virtual meeting from her official residence ‘Ganabhaban’ while ministers and secretaries joined the meet from the Bangladesh Secretariat through a video conference.

The flood situation is likely to deteriorate in the country’s northern and north-eastern districts as heavy rains been forecast in neighbouring India’s West Bengal, Assam, and Meghalaya, said FFWC.

The situation is likely to remain unchanged in Kurigram, Gaibandha, Bogura, Jamalpur, Naogaon, Natore, Sirajganj, Tangail, Manikganj, Munshiganj, Madaripur, Faridpur, Chandpur, Rajbari, Dhaka, Shariatpur, and Brahmanbaria in the next 24 hours, according to the report.

According to sources, 119 people have died in 21 districts of the country from June 30 to July 25.

Besides, 98 people drowned, 13 people were bitten by snakes, 6 people were killed by lightning and 1 person died due to other reasons. In addition, a total of 10,084 people have been infected with various diseases. people are suffering from various diseases including diarrhea, respiratory problems (RTI), skin diseases, eye inflammation, and other traumatic causes due to floods.

In the last 24 hours, 412 people were infected with diarrhea, 132 with respiratory problems, 280 with skin diseases, 30 with eye inflammation, and 1,217 with 51 other injuries. Hasina has asked the authorities concerned to make preparations in advance to rehabilitate the flood-victims after the deluge.

She has asked the agriculture minister to take measures for cashing on the advantage of flood for bumper production of the specialized paddy named ‘Amon’ and ‘Ropa Amon’ (T Aman).

“If ‘Amon’ production is hampered by the ongoing flood, it could be covered up by bumper production of ‘Ropa Amon’ following the deluge that makes the soil fertile,” the PM told officials. She also directed the local administrations to take prompt measures to accommodate the flood-affected people to nearby schools, colleges and madrasahs in case of not having sufficient flood shelters, and give them all sorts of relief materials, particularly water purifying tablets and oral saline and make sure regular vaccination of their domestic animals.

Simultaneously, Hasina asked the government officials to be cautious in case of distributing relief materials amid the Covid-19 pandemic. “Every kind of assistance would have to be extended to the flood-hit people if the ongoing flooding is prolonged,” she told the government officials. The officials, particularly the field-level ones, have been asked to stay prepared all the time staying at their workstations to face any situation if the deluge is prolonged.

Briefing newsmen after the regular weekly meeting at his Secretariat office Cabinet Secretary Khandker Anwarul Islam said that the Prime Minister gave them direct instruction of taking all-out preparations to tackle any situation as there was an apprehension that the flooding may be protracted.

The directives came from a regular weekly cabinet meeting with the Prime Minister in the chair on Monday morning, a day after she gave similar instruction to her party leaders and activists.

Azhar Ali, District Relief and Disaster officer said 6,340 hectares of cropland have been inundated while 60 educational institutions were damaged in Sariakandi Upazila. Besides, 15 km of the road of Sariakandi Upazila went under flood water, snapping road communications.

In Kurigram, the Dharla River was flowing 26 cm above its danger point at Bridge point area while Brahmaputra river was flowing 57 cm above the red mark at Chilmari point and 44 cm up at Nunkhawa point on Monday. Over 3 lakh people of the district remained stranded in floodwater in 9 Upazilas for the last one month.

Also, 50,000 dwelling houses and 10,000 crops lands were damaged in the flood water as one-third of the district have been flooded. Five schools collapsed while 139 schools were damaged by the floodwater while a 37-km road and 31 km embankment were also affected, said the officials of the Water Development Board.

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