Guwahati: Flood waters of the Brahmaputra submerged 60 per cent of the Kaziranga National Park (KNP) on Monday, forcing animals to take shelter on highlands inside or flee to safer places across the National Highway 37 that passes through the park.
KNP Director S.N. Buragohain told The Hindu that the eastern and western ranges of the park, famous for its one-horned rhinoceros, faced the maximum inundation. If the rainfall continued in the upper reaches of the Brahmaputra, the entire park area may be submerged.
On Monday, herds of elephants crossed the NH 37 and moved towards Karbi Anglong during the day to take shelter on the highlands.
Large numbers of deer have also crossed over, prompting the authorities to take precautions such as barricading, night patrolling and strict enforcement of speed limits for vehicles on the national highway to prevent the animals being run over.
The flood situation on the Majuli river-island in upper Assam’s Jorhat district turned critical during the day, with flood waters of the Brahmaputra breaching the main Auaniati-Kamalbari road at three places early in the morning.
Movement of vehicular traffic along the NH 31 in lower Assam — the lifeline of all the seven north-eastern states — remained suspended for the second consecutive day, as a 4-km-long portion was still under knee-deep water due to breaches in the Puthimari embankment.
The overall flood situation in the State remained critical with the Brahmaputra, the Barak and their tributaries flowing above the danger level at 12 places.
Chief Minister Tarun Gogoi visited the flood-hit areas in lower Assam’s Kamrup district and ordered a probe to fix the responsibility for the breaches in the embankment of the Puthimari on Sunday. The State government earlier suspended 12 personnel of the Water Resources Department in connection with the breach in Matmora embankment that led to the worsening of the flood situation in Dhemaji and Majuli.
Activists of the Asom Jatiyatabadi Yuba Chatra Parishad (AJYCP) blocked 20 Assam Rifles trucks carrying relief materials to Bihar at Jorhat town on Sunday night. They also disrupted loading of flood relief bound for Bihar at the Guwahati railway station. The AJYCP activists alleged that though lakhs were hit by the flood in Assam, no such special relief measures were initiated.
Manik Kar, who is associated with the Centre for Disaster Management at the Tezpur University, attributed the worsening of the flood situation in Assam over the years to the increase in the intensity of rainfall and the absence of a proper flood management system.
6 months ago