Though seasonal monsoon rains are not uncommon for the people living on the South Asian belt, between July and September, this year’s flooding is believed to be the worst in years.
Within two weeks, almost 1,000 people have reportedly been killed, while several weather victims have been displaced after some of the worst floods hit the region.
The residents are suffering, running out of food and clean water.
Since Aug. 10, the combined death toll in Bangladesh, India and Nepal has increased after more than 800 people reportedly died. NGOs are warning of possible water-borne disease outbreaks and food shortages, the crops and animals of these countries have also been destroyed.
The roads and houses have been swept away.
In Nepal, 141 people are confirmed dead, whereas a whopping total of 38,000 households were severely affected by the floods. Last week, elephants recued tourists trapped in a jungle safari park in a popular resort in southern Nepal.
"We have to sleep on the side of the road, and we will have to die on the side of the road. We don't have a house, nothing to eat, everything was swept by the flood," Mohammad Sahi Muddin, a flood victim from Nepal's Birgunj city, told Al Jazeera.
In Bangladesh, at least 115 people have died and more than 5.7 million have been affected with more than a third of the country submerged under water.
“The need is huge and our resources are limited. We cannot respond to all of what people require in this situation,” Najibullah Hameem, chief of field office for the U.N. children’s agency, Unicef, in Bangladesh, told the Guardian.
“[Agencies had made plans based] on last year, when the flood was not serious like this. We had not expected the number of communities that are currently affected.”
In India, at least 180 people have died, in the Indian state of Assam, which borders Bangladesh. “With the floods washing away everything … there is not even a trace of our small thatched hut,” said Lakshmi Das, a mother of three, living in Kaliabor, Assam.
According to the state disaster management authority’s statement, up to 152 animals have also been affected.
Meanwhile, in the eastern Indian state of Bihar, the death toll has risen to 253. Thomas Chandy, CEO of Save the Children in India, warned of an immense outbreak of water-borne diseases.
“One of the big challenges is preventing potential outbreaks of disease like cholera or diarrhoea, which is an increased risk at this time. A lot of water sources have been contaminated by the floods, and many children are living in damp conditions that are conducive to getting sick,” she said.
Indian citizens, devastated from the floods with nowhere to go blamed the government for not responding to the massively disastrous situation in time.
The state government, run by an ally of Prime Minister Narendra Modi, has assured all support to the flood-hit population. However, now it is evident that their response was inadequate.
"No central government funds have come through. The state government and the district administration were also late in their response,” lamented Hasan Jawed, a local journalist in Kishangunj.
Banner,Thumbnail Credit: Reuters, Cathal McNaughton