Heavy rains have caused extensive flooding in parts of West Bengal, causing loss to life and property and disrupting normal life. The rain has brought miseries for people as they complain of government's inefficiency in dealing with the flood situation. “There is no aid coming to people since morning. Everyone is suffering be it animal or humans as there are no boats. People are forced to sit on the trees as houses are under water. The situation is appalling but there is no sign of aid from the administration side. Flood water has swept away 10-12 villages but so far we have not been provided with any help," said Shubamoy, a villager.
Local news channels said on Thursday that at least six people have been killed in the floods that have ravaged East and West Midnapore districts of the state. In West Midnapore alone, about 1000 mud houses were totally destroyed and about 2,500 partially damaged.
The area received a record rainfall of 700 mm in the past three days that has affected hundreds of thousands of people. Experts said that a depression in the Bay of Bengal has caused the floods.
Authorities said rescue operations have started and 39 speedboats have been deployed in several areas. More are on the way. They have sought use of air force helicopters to ensure food supplies in the affected areas, besides deploying the Army for rescue work.
“All mud houses have been swept away and concrete houses are also under water. The situation has turned grave and people are facing problems related to drinking water and food. The hand pumps and water pipes are under water. I have spoken to district and state administration so that immediate action is taken to provide help to the victims affected by flood. Food will be airlifted for the affected people," said Kiranmoy Nandan, Minister for fisheries, West Bengal.
Sabang, Pingla, Naraingara in West Midnapore district and Pagashur in East Midnapur district are the worst affected. Road links have been cut off due to flooding of Keleghai and the Subaranarekha rivers. River embankments have been breached at various places.
The situation has worsened with fresh floods disrupting rescue and relief operations.