Death toll in Bangladesh floods climbs to 57

Death toll in Bangladesh floods climbs to 57

Several people still missing, houses, crops, roads, bridges damaged in southeastern region, say officials

By SM Najmus Sakib

DHAKA, Bangladesh (AA) – The death toll from floods jumped to 57 in southeastern Bangladesh while several others are still missing as the swollen rivers started receding after causing massive damage, officials told Anadolu on Saturday.

The Education Ministry, in a notification on Friday night, rescheduled the Higher Secondary School Certificate (HSC) examination in the flood-affected southeastern Chattogram district and two other education boards.

Earlier scheduled to be held on Aug. 17, the exam will now be held on Aug. 29.

The deaths were reported in four major southeastern districts between Aug. 4 and 11. Of the total deaths, 21 were recorded in Cox’s Bazar, 20 in Chattogram, 10 in hilly Bandarban, and six in Rangamati district, officials told Anadolu.

Meanwhile, Flood Forecasting and Warning Center warned that the major Jamuna, Brahmaputra, and Padma rivers would keep swelling in the plain areas in the next 72 hours. A similar forecast was issued for Surma and other rivers in the northeastern districts. The northern Teesta River waters may swell over the danger level, the center warned.

Monsoon rain is likely to be pouring in the major parts of the country in the next 24 hours starting Saturday, it said in a flood warning report published on its website.

Monsoon rains usually occur between June and September every year, affecting hundreds of thousands of people.

-Southeastern region badly hit

Since the beginning of this month, the southern and southeastern parts of the country have been experiencing heavy rains. Chittagong and Bandarban districts received record-breaking rainfall.

The flash floods also washed away hundreds of houses, submerged 5,000 hectares (12,355 acres) of crop fields and fish farms, and damaged vast stretches of roads in coastal Cox’s Bazar.

Officials told Anadolu the flood situation in the region has started to improve with decreasing rainfall and receding floodwater.

People’s suffering, however, has not decreased yet.

According to the Ministry of Disaster Management and Relief on Friday, about 1.0 million people have been affected by floods so far.

Chittagong district Relief and Rehabilitation Officer Md Saifullah Majumder told Anadolu that 20 people were killed in Chittagong, and one person was missing as of Saturday due to heavy rains and floods caused by torrential downpours.

“Out of 15 sub-districts in Chattogram, 14 were badly affected by floodwaters. Crops over about 27,000 hectares (66,718 acres) of land got submerged under floodwaters. Initially, there was a loss of over 30 billion taka ($273 million),” he added.

According to Cox's Bazar district administration, 21 people were killed and 480,000 people were affected by the flood. Apart from this, roads and 47 bridges were damaged by floods.

District Relief and Rehabilitation Officer Md Jahangir Alom told Anadolu that dry food and potable water have been provided to the affected people.

“It may take one week to calculate the real damage caused by the floods,” he added.

Rangamati district Commissioner Mosaraf Hossain Khan said: “In the hills of Rangamati, floodwater submerged the low-lying areas and damaged households and crops.”

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