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One swept away in Assam flood

Inclement weather shuts schools in Meghalaya, impacts tea plantations & triggers landslides in Assam

By Samsul Alam
  • Published 4.04.17
Water gushes over National Highway 54 in Kapurcherra. Picture by Samsul Alam

Haflong, April 3: One person was swept away in flash floods and many were injured, as heavy rain, squalls and hailstorms lashed Assam.

Subroto Paul, 49, a resident of Haflong, the headquarters of Dima Hasao district in central Assam, was swept away by floods while travelling to Haflong from Harangajao (35km), where he teaches in Public English High School, in a car. On reaching Kapurcherra, 28km from Haflong, he found the road submerged and tried to cross it on foot but was swept away, eyewitnesses said.

Harangajao police station officer in-charge Ramakanta Nath said rescue operations were launched immediately but the body has not be traced.

Communication on Lumding-Silchar National Highway 54(E) has also been snapped because of landslides in the district. Sounding a high alert, the district administration requested people to stay indoors. The inspector of schools of Dima Hasao has notified closure of schools.

The Assam State Disaster Management Authority in Guwahati today said 10 districts - Bongaigaon, Barpeta, Goalpara, Kamrup, Dima Hasao, Cachar, Karimganj, Hailakandi, Golaghat and Majuli - have been hit by heavy rain.

Heavy rain and hailstorm had wreaked havoc across the Barak Valley yesterday, razing houses, damaging crops and uprooting trees and electric poles.

In Silchar, the headquarters of Cachar district, several roads, including National Highway 54E, were waterlogged. Sources in the Silchar water resources division said the water level of the Barak was two metres below the danger level and would keep rising if the weather remained unchanged.

In Hailakandi district, at least 15 persons were injured in Lala Katlicherra town, 15km from Hailakandi town, during a hailstorm. Deputy Speaker Dilip Paul has asked Hailakandi deputy commissioner Moloy Bora to provide relief and rehabilitation to the affected. Administration officials today took the stock of the situation.

In Karimganj district, at least 10 persons were injured and more than 1,000 houses (mostly thatched) destroyed. "This is one of the worst devastations caused by hailstorm in Hailakandi and Karimganj districts after Independence," said Phani Bhusan Nath, 60, a resident of Lala.

Assam chief minister Sarbanada Sonowal was forced to cancel a trip to his home constituency Majuli in Upper Assam, where he was supposed to attend the Namami Brahmaputra festival today, due to inclement weather.

Torrential rain has thrown life out of gear in Lakhimpur and Dhemaji districts in Upper Assam and Siang Valley in Arunachal Pradesh since Saturday.

Additional reporting by Swapnaneel Bhattacharjee, Vinod Kr Singh and our correspondents in Hailakandi and Guwahati