India: Floods - Information Bulletin n° 5

Situation Report
Originally published

Disaster Relief Emergency Fund (DREF) alocat ed: N/A
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The Situation

With the south Asia monsoon season in its final stage, much of the Indian subcontinent still remains affected by the floods, with the worst affected states being Bihar, Orissa, Uttar Pradesh, Himachal Pradesh and Chattisgarh. At least 818 people have died in the country since the floods began.


The second phase of the floods began in the first week of September with heavy rainfall affecting 21 out of 38 districts in the state. The cultivation of the main crops of maize, paddy and banana has been damaged in several districts.

All major rivers in the state are flowing above the danger level in some parts of the state with the levels expected to rise even further in the coming days. The Ganges River reached its highest level since 1975.

The floods have come with their share of logistical difficulties as the main national highways have been submerged, causing the disruption of transportation and communication.

Damage details:

  • No. of districts affected - 21;
  • No. of villages affected - 3,392;
  • Population affected - 4.55 million;
  • Total area affected - 9.47
  • Houses damaged - 16,913;
  • Loss of lives - 142.


The State of Orissa has been reeling under severe floods since the end of August, with 23 of its 30 districts affected so far. A decline in the capacity of h t e Mahanadi River system caused the heavy flooding in h t e delta region as well as in some parts of western Orissa.

Roadsand communication infrastructure have been badly hit in some parts of the state. Breaches at several places along the river embankments have led to sand casting on agricultural fields, aggravating the plight of farmers. Since the embankments are made from alluvial soil, there is a threat of high seepage leading to their gradual weakening. Due to th e contamination of drinking water sources, diarrhoea cases are likely to increase.

Damage details

  • No. of districts affected -23 ;
  • No. of villages affected - 6,792;
  • Population affected - approximately 3,5 million;
  • No. of human lives lost - 58;
  • Livestock lost - 2,226;
  • No. of houses damaged -1 22,641;
  • Crop area affected 379,800 hectares of paddy and 52070 hectares of non-paddy land.

Uttar Pradesh

At least 34 people in India's northern state of Uttar Pradesh died within 24 hours even as flooded riv ers showed signs of receding, and the state government declared 20 districts as flood-affected. According to the latest reports, over 20,000 homes have been destroyed due to floods in the state and about 616,000 people evacuated to safety. 746 relief centers have been set up.

Himachal Pradesh and Chattisgarh

At least 43 people, mostly labourers, are feared killed and 15 injured in flash floods caused by a cloud burst near Solang in Kullu districts of Himachal Pradesh in last week of August. There was a major loss to the state with a considerable number of buildings and residential colonies being washed-out, allw ithin a span of 3 minutes. Flash floods have also affected the neighbouring state of Chattisgarh following the release of water from the Hirakud Dam in Orissa

Non Red Cross response:

2,840 volunteers trained under the National Disaster Risk Management (NDRM) programme of the Ministry of Home Affairs, Government of India (assisted by UNDP) have provided valuable service during the flood response activity. Medical and epidemic team have been deployed in the most affected areas.

Overall, the government has inaugurated an inventory database (the India Disaster Resource Network or IDRN) to be used for mobilizing specific equipment and human skills for emergency situations. This online information system can be accessed from the district states to the national level authorities enabling disaster managers to identify and channel the resources within a very short span of time.

The Government has delivered the f ollowing relief for the affected population in the state of Bihar:

  • No of relief camps - 227;
  • No of health camps -3 93;
  • No. of veterinary camps - 174;
  • Wheat distributed -56 tons;
  • Cooked food distributed -2 tons;
  • Polythene sheets distributed -1 53,000m.

Catholic Relief extended support of Rs 640,000 (CHF 18,823) to the flood affected people in Bihar.

In Orissa, UNICEF, CARE, EFFICOR and the Indian government have joint ly distributedt he main relief and food packets for the affected population. As a response to the disaster the Danish Embassy has released a grant of CHF 30,000 through Actionaid for emergency relief aid to Orissa.

Red Cross and Red Crescent action


The Indian Red Cross has released the following items for the flood affected victims: kitchen sets with buckets (2,000), sarees (2,000), dhotis (2,000), PVC rolls (200), assorted clothes (2,000), cotton blankets (2,000), medicine, e mergency rations (500 kg), water purification tablets(700,000), Cholera kit (1), and New Emergency Health Kit (1).


The Indian Red Cross responded by distributing emergency rations (240 kg), water purification tablets (290,000), sugar(1 50 kg), flat rice (2,110 kg), salt( 210 kg), dhotis (300), sarees (300), plastic tarpaulins (5,000 pcs), ORS packets (30,000) and assorted medicines. In addition, German Red Cross provided flat rice (3,250 kg), sugar (600 kg) and salt (200 kg), while the American Red Cross donated 200 litres of milk and 200 kg of Chhatua for the affected population.

The Red Cross assistance provided in Himachal Pradesh consisted of: woollen blankets (500), assorted clothes (1,000), ground sheets (10 rolls), kitchen sets (50) and emergency rations (100).

In Chattisgarh, h t e Red Cross state branch distributed: p lastic sheets (150), bed sheets (500), cotton blankets (500), kitchen sets (250), mosquito nets (50), assorted clothes (1,500), water purification tablets (50,000) and assorted medicines.

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For further details please contact (field to provide/complete relevant contact details):

  • Indian Red Cross, New Delhi; Phone 011-23716424; Fax 011-23717454; email
  • Indian Delegation, Azmat Ulla, HoD/ Regional Delegation, New Delhi, Bob Mckerrow; Phone 011-23324203; Fax 011-23324235;
  • Tatjana Tosic, Federation Desk Officer, Phone 41 22 730 42 22; Fax 41 22 733 0395; email

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