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Featured Image: Flood water has inundated houses at Dhupguri. 

By A Newsman

Siliguri, 12 August: NORTH Bengal has been hit by a devastating flood due to the incessant rain since 9 August, but the state administration is yet to wake up the situation at the desired exigency.

Three persons have died in the region so far by drowning in the flood waters, while an estimated 1-lakh people have been affected with their houses going under water. A large number of people have taken shelter in plastic tents that they have erected on high roads and embankments.

The deceased have been identified as Laltu Roy (19) of Balrampur in Cooch Behar, Kamalendu Roy (12) and Harakumar Roy (05) of Malkanipara in Jalpaiguri. They drowned in the flood waters near their house today noon.

Railways have so far cancelled seven passenger trains plying through north Bengal, while almost all trains plying via north Bengal between the northeast and various destinations in the country are running late. This is because of rail tracks going under flood water at various places in the region.

The districts that have been worst affected by the floods are Jalpaiguri, Cooch Behar, Alipurduar, North Dinajpur, and Malda. Situation in Darjeeling district too is heading towards grim with landslides in the Hills and flooding of several areas in plains at Siliguri. A morning landslide has damaged the Pankhabari Road in Kurseong.

Vast areas, including the main roads in the towns, have gone under waist deep water at Cooch Behar, Tufanganj, Mathabhanga, Jalpaiguri, Dhupguri, Maynaguri, Alipurduar, Hasimara, Hamiltonganj, Malda, Chopra, and Islampur.

A flooded street in Cooch Behar town.
A flooded street in Cooch Behar town.

At Deocharai in Cooch Behar, BSF jawans rescued several hundred villagers who got marooned in the flood in the village bordering Bangladesh.

Flood water has inundated the Malda Medical College and Hospital with near knee-deep water. Doctors and patients are forced to stay in the condition. Several streets in English Bazar have been submerged in water.

In Siliguri, low laying areas like Shaktigarh, Champasari, Ashoknagar, Jyotinagar, santinagar, Matigara, Bagdogra, Sahudangi, and Fulbari have been flooded. The same has happened to some 7-8 wards at Raiganj in North Dinajpur.

The civic body elections scheduled to take place at Dhupguri Municipality in Jalpaiguri has become uncertain as most parts of the town is under waist deep water. District magistrate Rachna Bhagat said that she has apprised the State Election Commission of the situation, and was waiting a response.

According to the Indian Meteorological Department, in the past 24-hours until 8.30 this morning, it has rained a whopping 440 mm at Barobisha in Alipurduar district, while Alipurduar town alone received 390 mm rainfall.

It has rained 290 mm in Jalpaiguri, 230 mm in Cooch Behar, 190 mm at Mathabhanga, 150 mm at Sevoke, 110 at Bagdogra, 100 mm in Malda, and 90 mm in Siliguri.

The rains are still on in all over the region. Met department has issued warning for further heavy to extremely heavy rainfall in almost all over north Bengal till 16 August. Notwithstanding the warning and the present situation, the state administration is yet to respond at the desired speed and coordination.