Flood kills 4 in North Bengal, 60,000 affected

Flood kills 4 in North Bengal, 60,000 affected

Flood kills 4 in North Bengal, 60,000 affected

A record high rainfall in the last 20 years has left North Bengal virtually cut off from the rest of the state as tea growers fear a 25% dip in production this year.

Torrential rain and flooding across the region left four people dead and more than 60,000 affected, government officials said.

The situation worsened from Sunday when heavy rainfall lashed four districts in the region — Jalpaiguri, Alipurduar, Darjeeling and Cooch Behar — leaving thousands of people homeless and even urban centres inundated. Besides, the loss of property worth a few hundred crores, flooding in the tea gardens of Dooars and Terai caused the maximum damage. Industry experts estimate that flooding has already led to loss of as much as 25% of the annual tea production.

The condition at tea gardens of Dooars and Terai has emerged as the biggest concern before the administration and the industry. “A large number of estates and factories have been inundated. Flooding has also prevented work in the middle of the peak plucking season. Rain has also affected tea production in Darjeeling,” an insider said.

Indian Tea Association officials said that besides some 30 estates being under water at Terai and Dooars, a part of Leesh River estate, owned by tea major Goodricke Group, has been completely washed away.
 

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