- Title: INDIA: Thousands leave India's flood-ravaged eastern Bihar
- Date: 3rd September 2008
- Summary: CROWDED PLATFORM WITH A TRAIN (SOUNDBITE) (Hindi) TRIPURARI KUMAR, A LOCAL SAYING: "Our houses are submerged in water, we don't know what to do if we stay back. So, we are going away, but we don't know where to go and which train to board. We have to think about what we would eat also."
- Embargoed: 18th September 2008 12:45
- Location: India
- Country: India
- Topics: Disasters / Accidents / Natural catastrophes
- Reuters ID: LVAD47LYFQGHDK6T3T2PMORZV2NE
- Aspect Ratio: 4:3
- Story Text: Hundreds of thousands leave flood-hit areas of India's eastern Bihar, fearing the damage caused by the floods is long term.
Hundreds of thousands of people headed out of flood devastated areas of Bihar on Wednesday (September 3), after losing their homes and loved ones.
The floods were caused when the river Kosi deviated its course in northern Bihar and it is expected to be a while before things return o normal.
"Our houses are submerged in water, we don't know what to do if we stay back. So, we are going away, but we don't know where to go and which train to board. We have to think about what we would eat also," said Tripurari Kumar, a local.
Officials say that over three million people have been displaced from their homes and at least 90 killed by floods after the Bihar's 'river of sorrow' burst a dam in Nepal, swamping hundreds of villages in the state and destroying 100,000 hectares (250,000 acres) of farmland.
While the state authorities are trying to provide relief to people, they have urged them to migrate to relief camps or to safer areas.
Sources have confirmed that mass migration is taking place, mainly in the worst flood hit districts of Saharsa, Bhagalpur, Supaul, Araria and Mashepura.
People are migrating, some aimlessly, through any available means of transport.
Javed Kumar waded through floodwaters from the worst affected Madhepura district to Bhagalpur to board a train to New Delhi.
"The situation is really bad, the entire family is now going to Delhi. We need to get away from here," said Javed.
The flooding, the worst in 50 years, was caused after torrential monsoon rains in the catchment areas caused the swollen Kosi River to breach a dam in Nepal, from where it originates.system.scripts.wo This unleashed huge waves of water that smashed mud embankments downstream in Bihar state.
Over 467,000 people have been evacuated so far, but there are tens of thousands still stranded. Activists and local media say the death toll could be many times higher than official estimates.
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