Assam flood: Three lakh people displaced
Associated Press, Sunday July 5, 2009, Lakhimpur
Though many parts of the country eagerly await monsoon, the rain has caused havoc in the northeastern state of Assam.
According to a local administrator, rescue teams rushed to an island in the Brahmaputra River on Saturday, where nearly 100,000 people took refuge after heavy rain flooded their homes.
Nearly 300,000 people in the state have seen their homes flooded in three days of monsoon rain, state Revenue Minister Bhumidhar Barman said.
The situation was so grave that in Lakhimpur, villagers used boats to get around and people carried food packages to the displaced. Meanwhile, the local meteorological department has predicted moderate to heavy rainfall.
The monsoon usually hits India from June to September, but the situation turned grim on Thursday after the surging Brahmaputra River breached a 328-foot (100-metre) stretch of a newly built embankment in Lakhimpur district in Assam state.
Monsoon floods hit Assam almost every year, with heavy rains swelling the Brahmaputra and its innumerable tributaries that crisscross the state. Last year, millions of people were forced to temporarily abandon their homes.