India: Floods - Emergency Plan of Action (EPoA) Emergency Appeal n° MDRIN026

Originally published
View original


Description of the disaster

Multiple districts in the Indian states of Assam, Bihar and Uttar Pradesh have been experiencing floods. The first wave of floods occurred in Assam on 24 June 2020 was at a scale that was manageable by the local authority and Indian Red Cross Society but subsequently there was heavy rains in the upper catchment of the three rivers (Brahamputra- Assam,
Kosi- Bihar and Ghaghra- Uttar Pradesh) resulting high flood and inundation of larger areas. The flood magnitude increased in the later part of June up to 23 July 2020 when a big flood affected 38 districts all together in three states.

The situation aggravated and the National Society scaled up its response activities in Assam, Bihar and Uttar Pradesh. Click here to see the map of affected areas.


In Assam, 30 districts have been reported to be affected by the floods and they are as follows - Dhemaji, Lakhimpur, Biswanath, Charaideo, Sonitpur, Udalguri, Darrang, Baksa, Nalbari, Chirang, Bongaigaon, Kokrajhar, Dhubri, South Salmara, Barpeta, Goalpara, Kamrup, Morigaon, Nagaon, Hojai, West Karbi Anglong, Golaghat, Jorhat, Majuli, Sivasagar, Dibrugarh, Tinsukia, Cachar, Kamrup (Metro) and Karbi Anglong. More than 5,664,499 people have been affected in Assam by the floods according to the Ministry of Home Affairs Disaster Management Division (National Emergency Response Centre), situation report as on 23 July 2020 at 20:00 hours local time.

According to the Indian Meteorological Department (IMD), the Brahmaputra river is flowing above the danger mark in Assam – in the cities of Guwahati, Dhubri and Goalpara, as well as the districts of Jorhat and Sonitpur. Its tributaries are also flowing above the red mark. Embankments, roads, bridges, culverts, and infrastructure have been damaged at various places. Massive erosion has been witnessed in a number of districts. India Meteorological Department (IMD) has predicted more rain during the coming days, with the situation expected to worsen. The widespread flooding, along with the deteriorating COVID-19 situation in Assam, has been challenging for the state.


In Bihar, amid the worsening number of COVID-19 cases, thousands of people have been forced to flee their thatch and brick homes as flood waters have affected more than a hundred villages. The rising water levels of several rivers are threatening to inundate many villages in the coming days.

Nearly 640,000 people have been affected by the floods in Bihar as of 27 July, as per the official data of the state disaster management department. The numbers of affected people are increasing day by day. It is not only villagers and their livestock that are badly hit by floods, wild animals have also been affected. The forest department in East Champaran district reported that they rescued 74 deer from flood waters, with nine of them dying.

After heavy rains in the capital city Patna on 19 and 20 July 2020, a major part of the city is in the grip of water logging. This has sparked fear among the city’s population of a recurrence of the worst ever water logging that the city experienced in 2019.

According to official report of the department,156 panchayats in 32 blocks in ten flood-prone districts of Sitamarhi, Sheohar, Supaul, Kishanganj, Darbhanga, Muzaffarpur, Gopalganj, East Champaran, West Champaran and Khagaria have been affected by the floods. More than 17,762 people from inundated villages have so far been evacuated to safer places and about 1,075 people are staying in five relief camps. A total of 29 community kitchens are running in flood affected areas.

Uttar Pradesh

In the neighboring state of Uttar Pradesh, flooding was reported in the districts of Gorakhpur and Ballia, where the Ghaghara river is at a severe flood situation level, standing at 64.35 meters as of 16 July 2020, where the danger level is 64.01 meters. In Gorakhpur, the Rapti river stood at 75.33 meters, above the danger mark of 74.96 meters. The State Disaster Management Authority of Uttar Pradesh reported that 111,781 people in the state have been affected by flooding or heavy rains since the start of this year’s monsoon. The ten affected districts include Ayodhya, Gonda, Bahraich, Barabanki, Balrampur, Kushinagar, Gorakhpur, SItapur, Mau and Mahrajganj. Two people have lost their lives and 162 houses have been damaged.

The following table summarizes the impact of the floods in Assam, Bihar and Uttar Pradesh as of 23 July 2020.
More than 6.4 million people have been affected by the floods according to the Ministry of Home Affairs, Disaster Management Division (National Emergency Response Centre) Situation report as on 23rd July 2020 at 20:00 hours local time.