Flood situation deteriorates in Kurigram, over 200,000 people marooned

Flood in Kheoar Algar Char area in Jatrapur union of Kurigram Sadar upazila on 4 July 2024Prothom Alo

New areas in Kurigram have been flooded as the water of Brahmaputra and Dudhkumar rivers has risen due to heavy rains and upstream waters.

More than 200,000 people of 14 unions in five upazilas of the district have been suffering as they have become marooned.

The waters of the Brahmaputra flow over the danger level at three points.

News agency UNB adds: Academic activities at 37 government primary schools in six out nine upazilas of the district have been suspended while 2,300 hectares of croplands also got damaged.

New areas are being flooded daily as the water continues to rise.

Due to the flooding, ferry movement between Chilmari and Rowmari upazilas remained suspended for flooding.

People have taken shelter at Prothom Alo Char's Prothom Alo School at Ghogadaha union in Kurigram Sadar upazila. Flood water reaches there as well on 4 July 2024
Prothom Alo

On Thursday morning, the Water Development Board reported that the Brahmaputra River’s water level has risen by 78 centimetres above the danger level at the Chilmari point, 72 centimetres at the Nunkhawa point, and 80 centimeters at the Hatia point.

On the other hand, the water levels of the Teesta River at the Kaunia point, the Dudhkumar River at the Pateshwari point, and the Dharla River at the Shimulbari point are flowing below the danger level.

Residents in the char areas and low-lying regions near the rivers are the worst sufferers of the flood as water enters their homes. Many families, along with their livestock, have taken refuge on flood control embankments, enduring severe difficulties.

The submersion of both dirt and paved roads has disrupted the communication system, aggravating the plight of the flood victims.

Houses under floodwater at Prothom Alo Char in Ghogadaha union in Kurigram Sadar upazila on 4 July 2024
Prothom Alo

Matiur, a resident of Porar Char in Jatrapur union of the Sadar upazila, said the water from the Brahmaputra is surrounding their house and he worried about his livestock.

Matiar Rahman from Musa’s Char in Begumganj union also said, “Every house in our char is submerged. Some people are using boats, while others have built platforms to stay on higher ground. Every family here is suffering greatly.”

Md. Rakibul Hasan, executive engineer of the Water Development Board said, “The water levels of the Brahmaputra and other rivers flowing through the district may continue to rise for the next 48 hours. The Brahmaputra’s water is flowing above the danger level at three points, while other rivers’ water levels remain below the danger mark.”

A woman goes out to fetch drinking water amid waist-deep floodwater

District Relief and Rehabilitation Officer Abdul Hai Sarkar told the news agency that 62, 200 people across the district have been inundated.

“So far, 173 tonnes of rice and Tk 1 million have been allocated for distribution among the flood victims in nine upazilas. An additional 600 tonnes of rice and Tk 3 million are in reserve and will be distributed gradually,” said the official.