1.8 lakh left homeless in Assam

Himalayan News Service

Guwahati, July 18:

The Assam government today sounded an alert as floods triggered by heavy monsoon rains left at least 12 dead and over 180,000 homeless. A flood control official said that about 30,000 people were displaced overnight as rising floodwaters of the Brahmaputra river cut a swathe through parts of eastern Assam. “We have alerted all officials, including healthcare workers, to move to flood-hit areas in the shortest possible time when summoned,” an Assam government spokesperson said. Twelve people have died in the floods in Assam that began last week, a government statement said. “Some 350 villages in seven districts of the state have been hit by the floods so far with the situation reported to be very critical in many areas,” the official said. Police and rescue workers with rubber boats were deployed in the worst-hit Dhemaji district, 470 km from Guwahati, to evacuate trapped villagers. The Brahmaputra is now flowing above the danger level in Assam, breaching mud embankments and snapping road links to interior areas, the statement said. “Displaced people who have fled their homes due to the floods are now taking shelter in raised platforms or in government

buildings and schools in areas not affected as yet,” said Assam Chief Minister Tarun Gogoi.

“We are providing food and healthcare facilities to the people in the makeshift shelters.”

Typhoon lashes Taiwan, China

TAIPEI: Typhoon Haitang lashed communities along Taiwan’s northeast coast on Monday, as officials ordered schools, government offices and financial markets to close. Taiwanese media reported the finding of body of a woman who was swept into a raging river in Taoyuan County, west of Taipei. After midnight, the storm made landfall at Ilan in eastern Taiwan, the Central Weather Bureau said. It was packing sustained winds of 184 kilometres per hour, the bureau said. Meanwhile, over 77,000 people have been evacuated in the coastal city of Wenzhou in eastern China as Haitang bore down on the region. — Agencies