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Last Updated : Oct 03, 2019 08:49 AM IST | Source: Moneycontrol.com

Bihar rain: 55 dead; BJP MP falls into river, rescued by locals

The causes of deaths include drowning, house collapse, falling of trees and electrocution

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As many as 55 people have died in rain-related incidents in Bihar following heavy rainfall between September 27 and 30. The rainfall has led to flooding in many parts in Bihar, including capital Patna.

The situation led to a war of words between partners of the ruling alliance, with the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) blaming the Nitish Kumar’s government for poor crisis management and the chief minister's Janata Dal (United) accusing the saffron party of speaking the language of the opposition.

The disaster management department said, 55 deaths have been reported from across the state and Bhagalpur accounted for the maximum number of 12 casualties.

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The causes of deaths include drowning, house collapse, falling of trees and electrocution.

The state received an average rainfall of 207.6 mm between September 27 and 29, way above normal, and the figure for the state capital stood at 342.5 mm for the period, the department said.

With a let-up in the showers since September 30, restoration work was on in full swing.

Besides those living in urban areas, 21.45 lakh people of 959 villages of 15 districts have been affected by the heavy rainfall and they are being provided relief at 45 relief camps and fed by 324 community kitchens.

A total of 1,124 boats are being used to rescue the stranded population, the department said adding that 23 teams of the National Disaster Response Force (NDRF) and the State Disaster Response Force (SDRF) have evacuated 69,752 people from the water-logged areas.

Food packets have been air-dropped in the affected areas by two helicopters of the Indian Air Force (IAF).

The Patna Municipal Corporation (PMC) is working to flush out water from inundated localities with the help of three heavy duty pumps brought in from Bilaspur in Chhattisgarh.

CM Nitish Kumar waded through water-logged streets, with his pyjamas folded up to knees, supervising rescue and rehabilitation work late on October 1 night and urged people to have patience.

BJP MP falls into river in rural Patna, rescued

BJP Member of Parliament (MP) and former union minister Ram Kripal Yadav ight fell into a river near Patna on October 2 while he was on his way to a flood-hit area falling in his parliamentary constituency.

The incident took place in Dhanarua block of rural Patna, which falls under Pataliputra Lok Sabha segment. Yadav is representing Pataliputra for the second consecutive term.

Yadav was riding a contraption made with the help of tyre tubes tied to bamboo shafts, apparently on account of non-availability of boats, to cross the Dardha along with some of his supporters. The contraption was about a few yards from the shore when it tilted and all those aboard, including the MP, fell into the river.

Onlookers who were standing on the banks of the river to receive the lawmaker dived into the river and Yadav was promptly rescued.

According to news agency PTI, The MP remained unconscious for a few seconds during which the people fanned him with their 'gamchas' (towel) to help him recover after which Yadav -- looking haggard from the shock and suffocation -- was led to his destination.

MoS meets people, doctors at AIIMS Patna

Union Minister of State for Health Ashwini Kumar Choubey met people stranded in water-logged areas and doctors at the All India Institute of Medical Sciences (AIIMS), Patna.

"Teams of Indian Council for Medical Research and National Vector Borne Disease Control Programme will visit the city soon to draw a roadmap for prevention of outbreak of diseases usually seen in water-logged localities," he said.

Meanwhile, West Champaran MP and BJP's newly-appointed Bihar unit president Sanjay Jaiswal said, "What has happened in Patna is a case of administrative failure. The state government must review the situation, fix accountability and take exemplary action."

Jaiswal's statement came close on the heels of Union minister and senior BJP leader Giriraj Singh, a known detractor of Nitish Kumar, having said the NDA owed an apology to the people of Patna who have been voting for the coalition.

The JD(U), which is headed by Kumar, felt cornered by its alliance partner, and reacted sharply.

"The government is doing its job. We would request our alliance partners not to speak the language of the opposition. Cities of Maharashtra and Gujarat have experienced similar problems after heavy rainfall. If the chief ministers there were then not dubbed a failure, why is Nitish Kumar being targeted," JD(U) secretary general and chief spokesman KC Tyagi said. Both Maharashtra and Gujarat are BJP-ruled states.

(With inputs from PTI)

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First Published on Oct 3, 2019 07:42 am
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