Millions affected by south Asia floods after heaviest monsoon rains for years

The heaviest rains for years have led to monsoon floods across large parts of South Asia, resulting in a humanitarian crisis, affecting over 24 million people and causing 700 deaths. The monsoon rains are expected to last until the end of September, raising fears of the worst floods in a generation.

ActionAid’s Asia Head Jagat Patnaik says:

“Over a third of Bangladesh and Nepal and large areas of India have been flooded and there are real fears that polluted flood waters will lead to outbreaks of disease and severe food shortages.

“The flooding is already much worse than usual - much of Nepal has seen the worst rain in 15 years - and we expect it to get worse as the monsoon rains continue for another six weeks.

“ActionAid is responding on the ground with an immediate humanitarian response in all three countries. In Bangladesh, we are already providing cash help in Jamalpur;

“In India, ActionAid and our partners have been responding to the immediate needs of communities in Uttar Pradesh, Bihar, West Bengal, Assam, Gujarat, and Rajasthan; in Nepal our local aid workers are currently on the ground getting emergency food and water to people in desperate need in Banke, Morang, Siraha, Parsa and Bara.”

Millions of people are in urgent need and ActionAid is especially concerned about women and children under five, who we believe to be the most vulnerable. Millions of people’s businesses and crops have been destroyed, leaving people hungry and unable to support themselves or their families.

Right now, people’s most pressing needs include food, shelter, clean water, bedding and warm clothes.  We are also providing hygiene kits to ensure proper sanitation and hygiene for women and girls and help prevent the spread of waterborne diseases, which are always a concern after major floods.

 

Editors' notes
  • In Bangladesh almost 6 million people have been affected by floods with 300,000 people in emergency shelters, and 98 people known to have died. Relief efforts are being hampered by damage to roads and bridges damaged.  
  • In India, over 11 million people are affected by floods in four states across the north of the country and even more heavy rain is expected in the region this week.
  • In Nepal, many areas remain cut off and stranded without food, water and electricity.  At least 128 people have died, over 1.7 million people have been affected and 44,683 displaced by flooding in 35 districts. Almost 10,000 houses have been destroyed and nearly 400 schools are being used as temporary shelters. Crops worth tens of millions of dollars have been destroyed and over 500 industries have shut down.

For more information please contact ActionAid international media manager Paul Dyett on +44 (0) 7850 312438, paul.dyett@actionaid.org  or Skype: pauldyett. Twitter:@actionaidnews