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State reels under first flood fury

* 1,48,912 people in 222 villages across eight revenue circles of six districts affected
* No loss of life has been reported
* NDRF & SDRF teams pressed into service
* Embankments breached at several places; highways inundated

OUR BUREAU
GUWAHATI/KAZIRANGA/HAILAKANDI, June 13: In the first wave of floods in the State, 1,48,912 people in 222 villages across eight revenue circles of six districts of Assam have been affected as on Wednesday. The worst affected districts are Bishwanath, Golaghat, Hailakandi, Karimganj, Karbi Anglong (East) and West Karbi Anglong.

However, no loss of life has been reported so far.
River Katakhal in Matizuri in Hailakandi district is flowing above the danger level. Meanwhile, embankments were breached in the lower bank of River Lonai at Nayadahar in Karimganj District. There have also been breaches in the embankment at Niz Vernerpur I & II, (Wankhailaikai) at Sudarshanpur- III and also at E & D Dyke at Rajwesyarpur- VII. The approach points of both sides of bridge were washed out at Sudarshanpur-III (Near Kalacherra GP Office) under Lala RC in Hailakandi District. Boro Muolkoi – NH-54 has also been affected while NH- 154 has been inundated at Paloicherra and Lalcherra under Katlicherra Revenue Circle.

NDRF (National Disaster Response Force) and SDRF (State Disaster Response Force) teams have been pressed into service in the flood affected areas for search and rescue operations. Altogether 124 persons have been evacuated from Karimganj district. Besides, 10,710 flood affected persons are now residing in 71 camps set up in Karimganj, Hailakandi and Golaghat.
Kaziranga correspondent adds: With National Highway NH-37 under flood water, high alert has been sounded in the entire adjoining areas. Water level passing over the highway has led to unprecedented blockade of vehicles.

This morning, as a precautionary measure the Bokakhat administration stopped the vehicles in the main stretch of the highway. However, the vehicles were allowed to slowly traverse the flooded stretch after 2 pm. as the water receded to a certain extent. If the rainfall continues there are apprehensions that there would be heavy damage of the bridge at Lotabari near Bokakhat.

Many nearby villages of Bokakhat and Kaziranga had been affected by the floods. Rescue operation is going on in the affected areas by the SDRF team.

Hailakandi correspondent adds: Following breach in the embankment at Tasla, Nimaichandpur has been hit with scores of people affected. River Katakhal has been in spate following torrential rainfall in the catchment areas for the past couple of days. Eight villages have been facing the flood fury while 50 others are partially hit. * More on page 5