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Thursday, June 13, 2024

Heavy rains disrupt lives as Howrah River swells


BY TC News Desk

Agartala, 28th May 2024:  Heavy rains since Tuesday morning have caused the Howrah River to swell, forcing residents in the Baldakhal area of the capital to abandon their homes and seek shelter in safer places. As rainwater inundated homes, scenes of disruption and distress unfolded, with people hurriedly relocating to temporary camps along with their livestock.

By noon, the situation worsened as water levels rose to waist height inside many houses. Anticipating further rises in water levels due to the swelling river, residents made their way to makeshift camps. Some carried their cows and calves to markets, schools, and offices turned into temporary shelters. Uncertainty loomed over how they would spend the night, and fears grew that returning home in the next two days might be impossible due to the rising waters.

The Baldakhal area, known for being low-lying and prone to floods, has seen similar situations before. However, local residents expressed frustration over the administration’s apparent negligence. They claimed that no inquiries or actions were taken by authorities since the onset of the rains. Despite the establishment of temporary camps and the provision of sugarcane for livestock, questions arose about the efficiency and responsiveness of the local administration. “Whose interests are they serving while drawing hefty salaries from our tax money?” lamented a displaced resident, highlighting the absence of officials on the ground to gather information or provide adequate assistance.

In a related development, Cyclone Remal brought widespread havoc across the state. Early Tuesday morning, several trees were uprooted by heavy storms, blocking the Sabroom-Agartala National Highway in front of Sepahijala Wildlife Sanctuary. The obstruction caused a complete halt in traffic.

Upon receiving reports of the incident, Bishalgarh police, forest department staff, and administrative officials promptly arrived at the scene. The forest department swiftly began clearing the fallen trees using chainsaws, while JCB machines were deployed to remove debris from the road. Traffic on the national highway resumed normal flow shortly after. The Officer-in-Charge of Bishalgarh police station confirmed that the highway had been temporarily closed due to the fallen trees but was cleared and reopened within a few hours.

As the region grapples with the aftermath of the cyclone and continued rainfall, residents remain on edge, hoping for a swift and effective response from the authorities to mitigate further disruptions and provide necessary support.

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