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Assam flounders in deep waters

The flood situation remained grim in Assam Monday, with more and more areas submerged every day across 16 districts, marooning some 10 lakh people, officials said.

Sources in the Disaster Management Authority [SDMA] said a total of 1,604 villages had come under water.

The government has opened 169 relief camps for the marooned, the sources said, adding that close to 1.50 lakh people were staying in these camps.

SDMA sources confirmed that four people had died due to floods -- one in Dibrugarh and three in Tinsukia districts.

Unofficial sources, however, put the death toll at eight.

The sources said the figures might increase as many people were reported missing.

The Brahmaputra and some of its tributaries are flowing above the danger level and maintaining a rising trend.

A red alert has been sounded in Majuli Island. All educational institutions have been closed indefinitely from Tuesday due to the rise of water level.

The Indian Air Force, army, National Disaster Response Force [NDRF] and the State Disaster Response Force [SDRF] are engaged in relief and rescue works.

Around 8,000 people had been rescued till Sunday evening in Tinsukia, Sonitpur and Dhemaji districts. Air force helicopters dropped 250 quintal of food items among the marooned at Sootea in Sonitput district and at Sadia in Tinsukia district till late Sunday.


SIKKIM DISTRICTS CUT OFF BY LANDSLIDES


The headquarters of Sikkim's North district on Monday remained cut off from rest of the state as rescue teams struggled to access remote areas as the toll in floods rose to nine in Assam and four in Arunachal Pradesh.

With landslides blocking roads, rescue teams comprising personnel of Indo-Tibetan Border Police, army, Border Roads Organisation and state government personnel were finding it difficult to reach remote areas where 21 ITBP and BRO personnel were killed and eight were missing in flash flood and landslides on Saturday, official sources said.

Bad weather was also hindering helicopters from making sorties in the area. But they were trying to drop essential commodities in Chungthang, blocked at 36 places by a series of landslides and where there was no electricity or drinking water, the sources said.

A helicopter carrying Chief Secretary Karma Gyatso also could not land due to bad weather.
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