Cloud burst may hit Bihar, warns weatherman

Patna, Sep 5 (IANS) It's bad news for millions of flood-affected people in Bihar. The India Meteorological Department (IMD) has warned of heavy rains and near cloud burst-like situation in the next few days that may create more devastation.

Nearly six million people have been affected by floods in 20 districts of the state. At least 176 people have died in the floods so far and thousands have been left homeless.

The IMD warning has alarmed the government that asked officials to be on alert and begin preparations for relief and rescue operations, if required.

"The IMD informed us that there is a possibility of heavy rains and near cloud burst- like situation in the next week of September in the districts bordering Nepal," said Vayasji, principal secretary of the disaster management department.

This will create havoc by affecting more areas and more people in flood-prone districts in north Bihar, he said.

IMD officials termed the likely heavy downpour as "havoc rains" as it will bring more suffering to the people, Vayasji said.

"We have to be alert and start preparations to face such a situation because heavy rains or cloud burst is bound to increase the level of water in major rivers, including the Ganga," he said.

A.K. Sen, director of the Patna IMD centre, confirmed the forecast.

Officials of the water resources development department said the government has sounded full alert in the Ganga riparian districts and appealed to the people to move to safer places.

Swirling waters of the Ganga have hit nearly a dozen districts, including Bhagalgur, Kharagpur and Begusarai, putting pressure on embankments and posing serious threat to several small towns and hundreds of villages.

Officials said standing crops in five lakh hectares worth crores of rupees have been destroyed and road communication at several places has snapped.


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