Current Affairs

Fury of the Floods

Despite thousands missing or dead, and hundreds of villages destroyed, the world has largely forgotten India’s flash floods.

Floods in HimalayaWithin a space of 36 hours the wrath of the floods in the Himalayan States including Uttarakhand, Uttar Pradesh and Himachal Pradesh has left villagers uncertain of their loved ones’ fates.

The unparalleled, incessant and heavy rains triggered landslides and floods in the Ganges River which has left absolute havoc, wreckage and devastation to the Northern states of India.

Whilst this ravaging disaster prompted the Indian army and military personnel  to try and attempt the evacuation of 100,000 people from the Himalayan valleys. The approximated death toll is up to 1,000, and up to 6,500 people are still missing.

According to official figures, 150 bridges and up to 1,500 roads have been exhausted leaving 73,000 people trapped in various locations without communication links to the rest of the world.

Therefore the greatest challenge has been to provide relief to those who are left stranded in these remote areas. Villagers have been left with no drinking water, no electricity and no communication for at least 2 weeks.

With the lack of infrastructure, further downpour and tough terrains hindering the rescue efforts, the workers are left with a real task to reach these communities. Certain areas are still off limits.

Experts indicate that the natural catastrophe has been attributed by man-made excess and negligence due to the lack of regulations in place. As a result, roads have been constructed in haphazard style, buildings including resorts and hotels built on delicate and unstable river banks. Environmentalists state that the calamity is due to the climate changes causing increased glacier melts. Locals, including religious devotees believe the flash floods were pre-ordained by a Goddess because of the relocation of a holy shrine by a power company.

Nevertheless, whether the cause is single or multi-factorial, it is inevitable that thousands will need aid to rebuild and rehabilitate the communities within Northern India.

Whilst this disaster will take years to overcome, CAREducation Trust and their partner organisation Chintan International hope to be an active part in the long term rehabilitation process. We can help to ensure that schools and training centres will be rebuilt as well as reconditioned to ensure the right to an education is not forgotten amidst the devastating floods. Education will be a vital component of rebuilding this community. By working alongside the great relief teams already in place, we can help restore some hope in the Himalayan communities for a better, brighter and stable future. Help us to make this a reality.

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By Nikita Patel

Disaster floods


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