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Major floods in Indian history

August 19, 2017

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Bihar flood of 1987 remains one of the deadliest to have been seen in India since independence. Bihar traditionally remains one state that is highly susceptible to floods and this one can easily be called the worst of them all. This particular flood claimed the lives of 1399 people alongwith 5302 animals. The flood also affected 29 million people across 30 districts, 382 blocks, 6,112 panchayats, and 24,518 villages in a negative manner.

It was estimated that crops worth INR 68 billion were destroyed in the floods. Authorities also estimated damages to public property to be at around INR 68 million. Kosi, the main river flowing through this eastern Indian state, was the main perpetrator in this case. It is traditionally known as the sorrow of Bihar.

Assam flood of 2012

It has been described by many as the worst flood after 1998 in India. It killed at least 120 people and also affected the life of everyone in 1744 villages spread across nine districts. 70,000 hectares of crop land was affected as well. As per available reports, at least five million people had to be evacuated. Kaziranga National Park was also highly affected by this flood that claimed the lives of 540 animals.

This included 13 Great Indian Rhinos as well. Its effects were heightened by the fact that no one expected it to happen. The flood was brought about by Brahmaputra, as well as tributaries, and it happened because of the heavy monsoon rains that year.

Maharashtra flood of 2005

Maharashtra flood of 2005 killed almost 1094 people. It happened in July preceded by Gujarat flood, which happened just a month ago. The flood either spoiled or damaged 52 local trains, 37,000 autos, 4,000 taxis, 900 BEST buses and 10,000 trucks. The financial cost of this flood was estimated to be around INR 550 crore.

Uttarakhand flood of 2013

In 2013 nine districts of this northern Indian state were inundated with huge landslides accompanied by massive rainfall, which precipitated flash floods across the state. Kedarnath Temple, which happens to be one of the most well known temples of Lord Shiva in the country and is one of the four dhams of Char Dham Yatra, was badly damaged in this flood. Almost 1000 people were said to have died. It is generally acknowledged to be one of the worst floods to have hit India.

Himalayan flash floods of 2012

The flash floods in Himalaya during 2012 occurred during midnight on 3 August. All the Himalayan states in India were affected by the same. The cloudburst claimed the lives of 31 people and also led to flash floods as well as landslides across the entire region.

Assam flood of 1998

Assam flood of 1998 is regarded as one of the worst to have hit the state after 1950. Across the six major gauge sites stationed on the river it had been seen for nearly three months before the flood happened that the river was flowing over the danger mark. The floods affected all the 21 districts in the state and affected around 47 lakh people living in 5300 villages. The flood also damaged 9.7 lakh hectares of crop land. Apart from that, it washed away or damaged 30,900 houses and killed 156 people. 7814 cattle animals were killed in the floods as well.


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I am from Kolkata. Like any other Bengali I love my fish, eggs and bhaat and sweets but I also feel proud to be a part of the biggest melting pot of the world - India. It is true that I need to go a long way before I finally call it a day but I have come some way and am sure will travel further. Cheers :)

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