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PM directs bodies concerned to gear up for rescue, relief operations

Kathmandu: Prime Minister Sher Bahadur Deuba has directed the bodies concerned to make arrangements for the immediate rescue and relief of people affected by flood, landslide and inundation in the country.

The big rivers including Seti, Mahakali, Karnali, West Rapti and their tributaries among others are flooded following torrential rainfall in various parts of the country. Cloudy weather has developed throughout the country since October 17 while the western region of the country has been affected the most due to floods.

PM Deuba issued the directive to Minister for Home Affairs Bal Krishna Khand to arrange for the rescue and relief on Tuesday morning. Home Minister Khand has also instructed the bodies under the Ministry to mitigate disaster risk and to protect peoples’ life and property from natural disasters triggered by torrential rain.

Home Minister Khand directed all the security bodies and the local administrations to work without any lacking in the rescue and relief works.

Chief of the National Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Authority (NDRRMA), Anil Pokharel, said the Ministry of Home Affairs has made assurance of full support for the rescue and relief operations.

The security bodies and local administrations of the affected districts have been mobilised in disaster management works.  Chief Executive Officer Pokharel said requests for rescue by helicopter have been received from places where people have been stranded due to flooding in various districts, and the necessary process for the same has been initiated accordingly.

It has been reported that two persons have died due to the disaster, one each in Dadeldhura and Kalikot district.

Likewise, around 200 houses have been inundated in Bhimdatta Municipality of Kanchanpur district. The local administration in Kanchanpur has said rescue operations are ongoing in the affected area. NDRRMA Chief Pokharel shared that people residing in the settlements on the banks of Mahakali River have been evacuated to safer places as the water level and river flow increased rapidly due to torrential rain. Similarly, people residing in the settlements close to the Karnali River have also been affected in Bardiya district due to the rise in water level in the river.

Likewise, a police office in Bajhang district has been inundated and the police personnel based at the office have moved to a safe place.

Meanwhile, the MoHA has stated that Beni-Mustang road, Bhimdatta Highway of Doti, Chaukhutte- Achham- Bajura road section in Achham, Jayaprithvi Highway of Bajhang, Martadi-Kolti and Sanphe-Martadi road sections in Bajura district have been obstructed due to floods and landslides triggered by rain.

The floods and torrential rain have also damaged the harvested rice crop in many areas.

The Ministry has urged the people to remain safe as there is the possibility of rain until tomorrow. Nepal is currently under the combined impact of the low pressure systems in the Bay of Bengal and Central India (gradually shifting north), and the westerly wind.

There are chances of heavy rain in some places of the Sudurpaschim Province and Province 1; at a few places of Province 2, Lumbini Province and Karnali Province and at one or two places in Bagmati Province today also, the Department of Hydrology and Meteorology has stated.

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