21 dead, over 2.6 mln affected by floods in Bangladesh

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DHAKA, July 20 (Xinhua) — The floods in parts of Bangladesh have left 21 people dead, affected over 2.6 million people and displaced hundreds of thousands of families.

According to the daily disaster situation report by the country’s National Disaster Response Coordination Center (NDRCC) under the Ministry of Disaster Management and Relief, 26,17,398 people were affected due to floods in 18 out of the country’s total 64 districts.

The report published on the ministry website on Monday said 21 people have now died in flooding in the country while 580,655 families have so far been affected.

TV reports showed that wide areas of land are under water in parts of Bangladesh as major rivers overflowed since last week.

Floods also reportedly caused widespread damage to habitation, crops, roads and highways across vast swathes of the country.

Officials said floods triggered by heavy seasonal rains and onrush of water from hills across the Indian borders have worsened again since last week in Bangladesh.

Due to onrush of upstream waters coupled with heavy to very heavy downpours, Bangladeshi State Minister for Disaster Management and Relief Md Enamur Rahman earlier said at least 23 Bangladesh districts are predicted to experience second wave of floods with the rise of water levels in major rivers.

Against this backdrop, Bangladeshi Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina asked officials to remain alert to tackle floods which come as a further blow at a time when the country is feeling the severe pinch of COVID-19 pandemic with over 207,000 cases and 2,668 deaths.

Rahman said they have rushed teams of disaster response forces to carry out rescue operation, distribute relief materials and supervise centers where flood-affected families have taken shelter.

The United Nations Office for Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA) in a report published earlier this month said current estimates indicate that nearly half of all districts in the country will be affected in the coming weeks.

It said the UN is closely supporting the government response and reaching those in need. A needs assessment will take place next week to support this work. Enditem

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