22 killed, lakhs affected in floods in Bihar, UP

    New Delhi:  At least 22 people were killed and lakhs affected in floods in Bihar even as major rivers, including the Ganga, were in a spate in the state and Uttar Pradesh.

In Bihar, 22 people were killed and 23.71 lakh people affected in the floods in the state caused by a spate in rivers Ganga, Sone, Punpun, Burhi Gandak, Ghaghra and Kosi.

The weather department has predicted thunder and lightning at places including Patna, Gaya and Bhagalpur in the state during next 24 hours.

 In Delhi, the mercury settled within levels normal for this time of the year.  The maximum temperature was recorded at 33.7 degrees Celsius, while the minimum settled at 27 degrees Celsius. The humidity levels oscillated between 81 and 64 per cent.

In UP, the Ganga was swollen well above the red mark in Allahabad, Mirzapur, Varanasi, Ghazipur and Ballia, while Yamuna, Sharda and Ken were flowing above the danger mark at various places as flood-like situation prevailed in eastern part of the state.

 In Ballia, Ganga's level has risen at dangerous level of 60.30 metres, which is about three metres above the red mark, according to the Central Water Commission.

 Light to moderate rain and thunder showers occurred at a few places over eastern UP where nearly 200 villages in Varanasi, 230 in Ghazipur, 115 in Chandauli, 125 in Ballia, 300 in Mirzapur, 20 in Bhadohi, 12 in Jaunpur, 11 in Azamgarh and seven in Mau district were reportedly affected by flooding.

Flooding has forced closure of schools and disrupted vehicular and train movement in Varanasi and Ballia. The spate in Ganga has also slowed down the cremation of bodies at the famous Manikarnika and Harishchandra ghats in Varanasi, while the river submerged Assi and Dashashwamedh ghats leading to the Ganga Arti now being held in the bylanes.

Teams of National Disaster Response Force (NDRF) were pressed into service in Bihar and UP even as the force managed to rescue over 33,000 marooned people from states including Rajasthan, Gujarat, Madhya Pradesh and Assam. Senior NDRF officials said a special control room at the forces' headquarter in the national capital is monitoring the flood situation 24x7.

 It has been raining heavily in isolated parts of Uttarakhand for the past few days with brief let-ups in between with nearly hundred rural motorable roads in 13 districts still blocked by debris from landslides.

 A woman went missing after a cloudburst hit Maroragaon village in Pauri district of Uttarakhand. The chardham yatra routes were also blocked at places affecting the annual pilgrimage.  

PTI