Storm kills 23 in Assam, Brahmaputra above danger level

Storms and lightning have killed 23 people in Assam since April, damaged houses and crops and affected over 22,800 people so far.

Floods have also affected over 5,000 people in five villages in Tinsukia and Dibrugarh districts in eastern Assam and rendered 118 people homeless. The Brahmaputra is flowing above the danger level at Nematighat in Jorhat district.

A statement issued by the Assam State Disaster Management Authority (ASDMA) on Tuesday said 10 people died due to storms while lightning killed 13 others.

It said five districts — Golaghat, Sivasagar, Dhubri, Sonitpur and Cachar were mostly affected in the pre-monsoon natural disaster so far.

“The entire state has been put on alert and the government has issued directives to all districts to take appropriate steps to provide relief to affected people. The state government has directed deputy commissioners to release the ex gratia of Rs 4 lakh each to the families of the deceased within 48-hours.

“The deputy commissioners of storm-affected districts have also been directed to immediately take steps for assessment and reporting of the loss of property, so that the rehabilitation grant may be released soon for the damaged houses. Awareness programmes have also been initiated on the dos and don’ts about storm and lightning through electronic media. The State Disaster Response Force personnel are well-equipped to clear roads whenever falling of trees disrupts road communication after a severe storm,” said the statement.

The bulletin said floods so far have destroyed 231 hectares of crops.

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