Flood fury

floods in northern India have claimed more than 321 lives in the past month. The situation is particularly alarming in Bihar where the toll has crossed 193, and property worth crores has been destroyed. The major rivers in the state like the Kosi, Bagmati, Kamala Balan, Punpun and Gandak have eroded their embankments and fresh areas are now being flooded. The kharif crop has been completely damaged as flood waters inundated 3.75 lakh hectares of land over several districts of northern Bihar. According to a report the total loss of the kharif crop is estimated at Rs 5 crore.

The other states which have been affected are Assam, Gujarat and Himachal Pradesh. Ironically, among the first victims in Assam were a baby rhino and a wild boar at the Kaziranga National Park, according to its director Bishen Singh Bonal. Official sources quoted in national dailies say that around 3 lakh people in 10 districts have been affected by the floods in Assam. About 50,000 hectares of crop land are under water.

In Himachal Pradesh, heavy rains caused landslides affecting power and water supplies in many areas. Reports say that the rivers in the state