Flash flood this season has caused colossal damage to crops on vast areas in the wetlands in the north-eastern regions of Sylhet. According to the District Agriculture Extension Office, 1,301 hectares of Aush paddy field, 1,704 hectares of Boro field and 1,004 hectares of summer vegetables went underwater on Thursday.
Reportedly, the Sylhet city went under flood water overnight on Tuesday because of flash flood triggered by days of torrential rain. The Surma and Kushiarar rivers continue to flow above the danger level due to the onrush of hilly waters from India as 2,200mm of rainfall has been recorded in Cherrapunji of Meghalaya state in the last eight days. New areas of Sylhet and Dunamganj districts district have been inundated since early Friday. At least 20 lakh people in the two districts have been directly and indirectly affected by the flood since May 12. Hundreds of students have been hit hard as flooding forced authorities to close educational institutions in Sylhet district.
Authorities concerned should take necessary measures to
rehabilitate the flood-affected people and
provide them with financial support
The dexterity that has been executed by Bangladesh in the last several years in disaster preparedness deserves plaudits. However, the ongoing situation in Sylhet certainly exposes our helplessness to fight against natural calamities. The flood-hit people of Sylhet city are also facing food and water crisis. The shortage of fodder is also becoming severe. Many are living on wooden platforms after water entered their homes. Waterborne diseases are also spreading rapidly. Although the government promised to provide relief, many did not get it as road communication between Sadar upazila and several other places has been cut off due to the worsening flood situation. Considering the flood situation in Sylhet and Sunamganj districts, the government should implement pragmatic measures to protect lives and livelihood.
The government and NGOs should gear up efforts to reduce the volume of the effects of flash floods. The authorities concerned should construct embankments along the rivers to protect the local people from flood in future.
Authorities concerned should take necessary measures to rehabilitate the flood-affected people and provide them with financial support. Besides, we should all work together to rehabilitate them. There is no denying that our country is currently lacking in resources to stand against flood and river erosion. However, we believe with proper implementation of new technologies, we can save lives, properties and assets and limit the grave consequences of flood and river erosion.