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Christian Aid Helps 400,000 Lives Hit by Monsoon Mishap in Assam

Wednesday, July 19, 2017, 17:55 (IST)

The monsoon calamity hitting Assam state this year has left hundreds of thousands homeless and claimed over 25 lives, so far.

Christian Aid has come forward to help about 400,000 people made homeless by the massive floods, which began in June and have worsened over the last few days.

By now, the floods have burst the banks of rivers, submerging villages and agricultural land across 15,000 hectares throughout Assam. Total, 740 villages have been destroyed.

Lakhimpur and Karimganj remain the worst affected districts, displacing over 300,000 people. Though government authorities have provided relief camps, only around 22,000 people are taking shelter in them. Toilet facilities are also flooded and the risk of disease spreading throughout the area is extremely high.

"Villages have been wiped out by the flood water. People need shelter, clean drinking water and food. We have had to organize a rapid response to this emergency," said Shivani Rana, emergency program officer at Christian Aid.

The allocated aid, £75,000, was offered through its local partner organization Indo Global Social Service Society to provide emergency assistance. The provision includes shelter materials such as tarpaulin, rope and groundsheets, water filters, aqua tabs, soap and mosquito nets amongst other essential items in the Lakhimpur district this week.

"The numbers of people who need help are enormous and now persistent and very heavy rains are forecast for the coming days so numbers will grow. In the longer term though, we will need to help these people build back their lives," said Rana.

"Getting access to those who need help is almost impossible because the roads are submerged so we have to rely on our partners' local knowledge and use alternative routes," Rana added.

Neighboring state Arunachal Pradesh too has suffered heavy rain and landslides this monsoon and its roads to several districts have been cut off. Last week an Indian air force aid helicopter flying food supplies crashed with no survivors.