India

Preliminary Appeal - Assam Floods (IND122)

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Assam Floods IND122
Appeal Target: US$ 451,273

Geneva, 13 July 2012

Dear colleagues,

Incessant rains have lashed many parts of the state of Assam causing an alarming rise in the water level of the Brahmaputra River affecting all 27 districts of the State. The Brahmaputra has breached its embankment in five places affecting more than 2,800 villages across nine districts and 70,000 hectares of cropland. The worst-hit districts include Dhemaji, Lakhimpur, Dibrugarh, Jorhat, Nalbari, Barpeta and Dhubri where water has engulfed large areas of cropland. This is claimed to be the worst flood in Assam since 1950.

More than 2.2 million people have been affected and to date 116 people have lost their lives in flood water and landslides. Nearly 500,000 affected people have fled their homes and are sheltering in relief camps while mobile rescue centres are in operation to provide help to the affected people. Educational institutions (such as schools and colleges, gram panchayat/ panchayat samity offices, community development offices, community halls, etc.) are being used for makeshift relief camps. 120 medical teams have been deployed to provide medical assistance. Large numbers of people have also taken shelter on higher ground with their livestock.

There is extensive damage to public infrastructure and thousands of houses have collapsed. More than 50 potable water sources have been contaminated by the flood waters. Standing crops such as rice have been destroyed and grain banks have also been spoiled.

Churches Auxiliary for Social Action (CASA) and the Lutheran World Service India Trust (LWSIT), both members of the ACT forum India, are operational in Assam and in the areas most affected by the flooding. They are in an ideal situation to be able to help the most seriously affected and vulnerable of the population if provided with the resources to respond. They plan to provide temporary shelter, food, non-food and hygiene items during the crisis phase. Other members of the ACT forum are currently not planning to respond to this emergency.