By A Newsman
Siliguri, 11 August: VERY heavy rainfall since Wednesday has resulted in a flood-like situation in parts of north Bengal, especially in Cooch Behar district.
According to Indian Meteorological Department, in the past 24 hours alone, it has rained 60 mm to 160 mm in different parts of the seven-district region. The districts that are witnessing very heavy showers are Cooch Behar, Alipurduar, Jalpaiguri, and Darjeeling.
From 8.30 am to 5.30 pm today, it has rained 89 mm in Cooch Behar. Siliguri too has received incessant rains throughout the day. The worry is that the Met department has forecast an extremely heavy rainfall of up to 200 mm to continue in these four districts until 14 August.
The rains have flooded vast areas in Cooch Behar and Alipurduar district, and have caused water-logging in Jalpaiguri town. According to a rough estimate by the administration, around 40,000 people have so far been affected by the flooding in Cooch Behar and Alipurduar.
In Alipurduar town, as many as five wards ~ 1, 9, 11, 16, and 18 ~ have been submerged by up to waist deep water. Kumargram, and Falakata in the district too have been flooded. Swelling river water has forayed into Jayanti, Kohinoor, and Kartik tea estates located on the banks of Raidak river.
In Cooch Behar town, flood water has submerged most of the roads from knee-deep to waist-deep water, making small vehicles go off the roads. The situation at Mathabhanga, and Tufanganj in Cooch Behar district is even worse with village after village been flooded and people getting ready to abandon their houses.
In comparison, Jalpaiguri has received less rainfall and yet, the poor drainage system has led to water-logging at Mahamaya Para, Jayanti Para, Chunilal Road, and Station Rod in the town.
The administration said that all the rivers in Alipurduar and Cooch Behar districts, such as Torsha, Mansai, Kaljani, Raidak, and Dima, were swelling. This has led to an alert being sounded for people living nearby these rivers.