Even as over a month-long flood situation in Assam marginally improved on Saturday, three more persons were killed in two districts, taking the death toll due to the deluge in the state to 79, while around 28 lakh people in 26 of the 33 districts remaiend affected.
Officials of the Assam State Disaster Management Authority (ASDMA) said that of the 28 lakh affected people, around 16.25 lakh are in four districts — Dhubri (469,265), Goalpara (448,858), Barpeta (354,707) and Morigaon (351,620).
According to Forest Department and ASDMA officials, at least 96 animals were killed, and 132 animals rescued even as 95 per cent of the world-famous Kaziranga national park, home to more than 2,200 one-horned Indian rhinoceros, remained inundated.
The officials said that over over a month, 79 deaths due to the floods took place in South Salmara, Darrang, Sonitpur, Biswanath, Tinsukia, Lakhimpur, Bongaigaon, Kamrup, Golaghat, Sivasagar, Morigaon, Tinsukia, Dhubri, Nagaon, Nalbari, Barpeta, Dhemaji, Udalguri, Goalpara and Dibrugarh districts, while 26 others have been killed in separate landslides since May 22.
The ASDMA officials said that Dhansiri, Jia Bharali, Kopili, Beki, Barak, Kushiyara and the Brahmaputra rivers are flowing above the danger mark in many places in nine districts.
The floodwater has inundated 2,678 villages, and 116,404 hectares of crop area in 26 districts.
The district administrations have set up 711 relief camps and distribution centres in 28 districts, where around 51,500 men, women and children have taken shelter.
Districts of Dhubri, Goalpara, Barpeta, Morigaon, Dhemaji, Lakhimpur, Darrang, Nalbari, Kamrup (Rural), Nagaon, Golaghat are the worst-hit.
Besides erosion of river banks at a large number of places, roads, embankments, bridges, culverts and other infrastructure were damaged at many locations in 26 districts, the ASDMA officials said, adding that hundred of houses were fully or partially damaged due to the flood.
Around 19.8 lakh domesticated animals and over 13 lakh poultry birds were affected due to floodwater.
Besides Kaziranga national park, located on the edge of the eastern Himalayan biodiversity hotspots of Golaghat and Nagaon districts, the Manas and R.G. Orang national parks, the Pabitora wildlife and the Tinsukia wildlife sanctuaries were also affected.
The National Disaster Response Force and State Disaster Response Force personnel, along with the local administration, are continuously working to rescue affected people and render relief services, including distribution of necessary material to the marooned villagers.