More than 10 lakh people have been affected by the floods in Bihar – over 2 lakh of them have lost their homes and waters from the Sone and Ganga breached the embankments. Patna is witnessing unprecedented floods, the worst since 1994.
Chief Minister Nitish Kumar, however, doesn’t want a Central team to assess the damage. Instead, he has demanded that a team of experts look into the problem of silt in rivers.
“This is the appropriate time to visit and gauge the problem but it should be impartial and not by someone who has already formed his own opinion,” the Chief Minister said at a press conference after reviewing the flood situation and an aerial survey of the affected areas.
Mr Kumar choose to renew his demand to highlight the problem of silting of rivers due to what he describes as an effect of the Farakka barrage on Ganga in West Bengal.
Last evening, following the request of the Bihar government, all 104 gates of Farakka barrage were opened, which provided some relief to the state, which is upriver.
According to Bihar’s Water Resource Department, Ganga is overflowing at various places in the state due to sudden discharge of over 11 lakh cuesecs water from Bansagar reservoir in Chhattisgarh.
Although Mr Kumar claimed there was no threat to state capital Patna and all the drains to river Ganga has been closed, flood waters entered several parts of Chapra town.