AUGUST 18,2008. In the wee hours of the day, the river Kosi breaches the embankments in Kusaha, Nepal, leaving in its wake an awesome trail of death and destruction downstream in Bihar's northern plains. Panic-stricken, people run helter skelter ooking for high ground, railway tracks, trees, whatever, to escape the swirling waters. At last count, on August 28, the death toll had touched 55.

Dipak Gyawali, Nepal


Behli Camp, located northeast of Supaul, is the last outpost of dry land after which the turbulent waters of the raging Kosi river take over. It is from here that the Army and private entrepreneurs are ferrying boats to bring in marooned villagers who have been living on rooftops and dry patches of land for the last three weeks.

Atul Thakur | TNN

Saharsa: Kripanand Thakur of Forbesganj is a very worried man. His mother, 75-year-old Maya Devi, is still stuck in Pratapganj block of Supaul.

Although the distance between Forbesganj and Pratapganj is only 35 km, Kripanand took 24 hours in traversing Katihar, Khagaria and Saharsa to reach Raghavpur


With water level of the rampaging Kosi river receding after wreaking havoc in five northeast districts of Bihar, the overall flood situation in the state improved even as rescue and evacuation operations were stopped.

Bihar officials said as the flood waters had started to recede, many people sheltered in government relief centres and adjoining dis tricts started returning to their villages despite persuasion by the local authorities to stay for some more time.

This is a region where, if you have survived the night, you are not likely to get your morning cup of tea because all milk-producing livestock is dead

Manisha Jha and Sandeep Dikshit

HANDS THAT SPEAK: Flood-affected people reach out for food packets distributed by a relief agency at Raghunathpur in Bihar's Madhepura district on Friday. Rescue workers have taken over 8 lakh people to safety, but tens of thousands are still believed to be trapped.

Building a barrage and an embankment to tame the turbulent Kosi was an unimaginative response to the flood problem by the Bihar Government, observes flood expert Dinesh Kumar Mishra.

Mishra, who is in Delhi to release his book, Trapped between the Devil and Deep Waters, explains how technological

The breach in the eastern embankments of the Kosi has completely uprooted one of the largest irrigation systems in Bihar

We have, over the last few days, been inundated with news about destruction being wrought by the Koshi River in Nepal and Bihar. The international electronic media has highlighted the plight of millions of flood affected people throughout this sub-region. Our domestic electronic media has also telecast reports of Teesta, Brahmaputra and the Dharla rivers crossing danger marks and marooning more than a quarter of a million people inside Bangladesh.