Early rains raise fears of flood in five districts

Shafiqul Islam
Published : 18:58, Jun 13, 2018 | Updated : 19:02, Jun 13, 2018

The Met office said that it predicts floods may hit 37 districts this year due to unseasonal early rains.The arrival of pre-monsoon rains across the country has revealed an alarming level of flood risks in five districts, prompting the government to alert the local authorities.
Incessant rains have triggered fears of flood in southeastern coastal district of Cox’s Bazar, the hill tract districts of Rangamati, Bandarban, Khaghracchari, and the northeastern district Moulvibazar.
“All the district administration chiefs have been allotted 200 tonnes of rice, Tk 500,000 in cash as initial aid support. The local administrations have been also ordered to prepare the educational institutions, so that they can be used as flood shelters. We have taken all preparations,” Relief and Disaster Management Minister Mofazzal Hossain Chowdhury Maya told Bangla Tribune on Wednesday.
He added that the army and navy have been also alerted over the situation.
The ministry has already started operating a flood control room to monitor the situation.
Its chief Deputy Secretary Abdul Kader told Bangla Tribune that the local administrations have been ordered to start evacuating people in the flood-prone areas of the five districts.
“Besides that, residents in risky areas of Chattogram’s (Chittagong) Fatikchhari and Raujan have been also told to evacuate. The administration has been instructed to ensure food and shelter for them.”
He added that the Rangamati district administration has been ordered to cash support of Tk 25,000 each to the families of the 11 people, who died in Tuesday’s landslide in Naniarchar Upazila.
Last year, at least 120 people were killed and nearly 200 others were injured in horrific landslides in the hill tract district.
The Rangamati administration said they have kept all its officials across the hilly district on standby.
“We have taken all measures. The location of the landslide in Naniarchar Upazila is very remote. Even I could not go there due to bad weather conditions. But officials across the district have been alerted,” Deputy Commissioner AKM Mamunur Rashid told Bangla Tribune.
The Met office said that it predicts floods may hit 37 districts this year due to unseasonal early rains. It also said that the rains may trigger landslides in the hilly southeast and northeast regions.
Heavy rains swept through Rohingya refugee settlements in Cox’s Bazar district in the weekend, leaving at least 200 makeshift houses damaged or inundated.
The government said out of the 1.1 million Rohingya, at least 200,000 are at risk.
“They are being taken to a safe place between Kutupalong and Balukhali areas. Almost 25,000 families have been already evacuated with the rest to be transferred soon,” said Disaster and Relief Management Secretary Shah Kamal.