Teesta flowing above danger mark, Kurigram may face flash flood

Teesta river’s water level has surged 41 cm above the danger mark in Kurigram district, while water levels of Brahmaputra, Dudhkumar, and Dharla rivers are also on the rise.

The escalating water levels have instilled fears of potential flooding among the residents living along the riverbanks.
Kurigram Water Development Board has forecast short-term flooding.

According to the district’s Water Development Board, Brahmaputra river’s water level is currently 72 cm below the danger mark at the Nunkhawa point, 58 cm below the limit at the Chilmari point, and Dharla river’s water level is 97 cm below the danger limit at the Kurigram Sadar point.

However, at Kaunia Point, Teesta river’s water is surging 41 cm above the danger level.

Low-lying areas including Begumganj, Nayarhat, and Saheber Alga in the Ulipur upazila of the district have already been inundated due to the increased water levels.

Irrespective of whether the water level of Teesta river rises or decreases, erosion stays persistent and the residents of the riverside areas run from rising waters all year round.

Md. Noor Alam, a resident of the Goraipia area near Teesta river, expressed his concerns about the rising water levels over the past few days, particularly for the paddy fields.

“Whether the water of the Teesta river rises or recedes, river erosion persists, and the year-round struggles of the Teesta Par community go unnoticed,” he lamented.

Surman Ali from Khitab Khan village echoed the same and expressed distress over the continuous rain and rising water levels.

“The incessant rainfall coupled with the rising Teesta water has submerged our lives again, along with our cattles,” he said.

Abdullah Al Mamun, executive engineer of the Water Development Board, attributed the rising river water to heavy rainfall in India’s Assam and Arunachal.

He said that the onrush of hill water and heavy rainfall in the region have caused the Teesta river’s water level to surpass the danger level. He also said that Brahmaputra river’s water might reach the danger mark in the coming days.

While the forecast predicts short-term floods in certain areas of the district, including some unions of Ulipur and Chilmari upazilas, Mamun said that despite the water crossing danger levels, a major flood event is not likely to occur.

Kurigram’s Deputy Commissioner Mohammad Saidul Arif said that comprehensive preparations have been undertaken to manage potential flood situations. All necessary arrangements, including food aid, rescue boats, and shelters, have been organized to ensure residents’ safety, he added.

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