Flood toll mounts to 77
TNN | Jul 3, 2012, 06.40AM IST
GUWAHATI: The death toll in floods, the worst-ever since 2004, climbed to 77 on Monday. According to state disaster management authority, 12 people have been drowned in the last 24 hours.
The floods, which started a week back, have now affected a total area of over six lakh hectare in 27 districts and a population of over 19 lakh. A total of 622 relief camps have been opened in 11 districts. The disaster management authority stated that with the rise of water level in the Brahmaputra and its tributaries, the protected areas along the floodplains of the river started getting flood peaks required to maintain ecological processes vital for creating variety of habitats suitable for different floral and faunal assemblages. But the optimum levels were crossed in the recent wave of floods and created stress conditions both for wild animals and protected area management. "The first to suffer the impact of excess flow of water was Dibru Saikhowa National Park, followed by other protected areas, as the water rolled downstream," it said.
On June 24, floodwaters entered Kaziranga National and reached the peak four days later. By June 28, floodwaters inundated the entire park area, forcing park authorities to shift it guards to drier areas. A large numbers of wild animals like elephants, hog deer, swamp deer, buffaloes and wild boars have moved out of the park for shelter and food.
So far one rhino, 22 hog deer and one wild boar have drowned. Fifteen other hog deer and one wild boar have been crushed to death by speeding vehicles as the animals tried to cross the national highway.
The Golaghat district administration has clamped 144 CrPc at Bokakhat and Koliabor sub-division on NH-37 from Bokakhat to Jakhalabandha to regulate the speed of the vehicles and minimise accidents.