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Bihar floods: Death toll rises to 72, 73.44 lakh people hit

In Darbhanga-Sitamarhi section of Samastipur division the flood water is flowing over rail tracks between Janakpur Road-Bajpatti stations and Kamtaul-Jogiara stations.

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Patna, Aug 16 : The death toll due to floods in Bihar today mounted to 72, as 73.44 lakh people across 14 districts have been hit by inundation which was triggered by incessant rains in Nepal and northern part of the state.

The death toll yesterday stood at 56.

Araria accounted for 20 flood deaths, followed by Sitamarhi (11), West Champaran (9), Kisanganj (8), Madhubani and Purnea (5 each), Madhepura and Darbhanga (4 each), East Champaran (3), Sheohar (2) and Supual (1), said Anirudh Kumar, special secretary in the state disaster management department.

He said 73.44 lakh people are in the grip of flood which has engulfed 110 blocks and 1,151 panchayats spanning 14 districts, with Gopalganj also getting submerged today.

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The special secretary said 2.74 lakh people have been evacuated and taken to safer places. Out of them, 1.16 lakh have been put up in 504 relief camps in different places.

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Community kitchens have been started for victims in marooned areas and available line hotels, aganwadi kendras and railway stations in Katihar district are being used for running community kitchen, the principal secretary to the disaster management department, Pratyay Amrit said.

Chief Minister Nitish Kumar, who was scheduled to conduct an aerial survey of Bettiah, Valmikinagar areas with Deputy Chief Minister Sushil Kumar Modi during the day could not do so due to bad weather.

Image result for relief camps in bihar East Central Railways chief public relations

Nitish Kumar conducts an aerial survey of flood hit regions of Bihar

He, however, monitored the flood situation from Patna through interactions with senior officials.

Pratyay Amrit held a meeting through video conferencing this evening with districts officials and gave them directions on helping the flood victims.

Train services continued to be affected due to the calamity and rail movement is completely disrupted in many sections, a statement from East Central Railways chief public relations officer Rajesh Kumar said.

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A damaged railway line in flood-hit Katihar district

These included the Motihari-Valmikinagar Road section of Samastipur division as water is flowing over the rail tracks in Narkatiaganj yard, besides Chamua-Narkatiaganj, Narkatiaganj-Sathi sections and Semra yard.

Rail service was hit in Sitamarhi-Raxaul section of Samastipur Division due to flooding of tracks between Chaura Dano-Adapur stations and Kundwa Chainpur-Bairagnia stations.

The Sugauli-Raxaul section of the saw flood waters submerging Sugauli and Raxaul yards and inundate area between Raxaul-Ramgarhwa stations.

In Darbhanga-Sitamarhi section of Samastipur division the flood water is flowing over rail tracks between Janakpur Road-Bajpatti stations and Kamtaul-Jogiara stations.

As a result several trains passing through these sections have been cancelled, diverted, short terminated and short originated, he said.

Image result for relief camps in bihar East Central Railways chief public relations

A goods train halts on the flooded tracks in Katihar

The trains cancelled today include Indore-Guwahati Express commencing tomorrow, Sealdah-Saharsa Hatey Bazare Express today and the corresponding Saharsa-Sealdah Hatey Bazare Express commencing on August 17.

The Rajendra Nagar(Patna)-New Jalpaiguri Express will short terminate at Katihar till further advice starting from today, the CPRO said.

Bihar BJP President Nityanand Rai contributed Rs 11 lakh on behalf of the party to the chief minister’s relief fund.

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Karnataka: 6 dead, 5 injured in boiler blast at sugar factory in Bagalkot

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Bengaluru: At least six people were killed and five critically injured after a blast took place in a boiler in Nirani sugars factory at Mudhol in Bagalkot district of Karnataka.

 

More details awaited

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Congress will do its work on farm loans waiver, BJP should perform its role : Gehlot

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Ashok Gehlot

Jaipur, Dec 16 : Ashok Gehlot will take oath as Chief Minister of Rajasthan on Monday but BJP has started issuing statements on  farm loan waiver.Rajasthan CM designate Ashok Gehlot said that Congress will do its work of waiving farm loans and BJP should rather perform their role as an opposition.

 “Congress will do its work. They should do theirs, if they don’t public will question them. The responsibility they have today is what we had in the last election & we worked. Now it’s their duty to work,” Rajasthan CM designate Ashok Gehlot said on BJP’s demand for farm loan waiver.

Congress President Rahul Gandhi, along with several senior party leaders, will be present on December 17 at the oath-taking ceremony of Rajasthan Chief Minister-designate Ashok Gehlot .

The programme, in which Sachin Pilot will also take oath as the state’s Deputy Chief Minister, would be held at 10 a.m at Albert Hall here.

Former Prime Minister and Congress veteran Manmohan Singh would also be present.

The other leaders expected at the ceremony include former Prime Minister H.D. Devegowda, former Union Minister Sharad Yadav, Congress leader Mallikarjun Khadge, former J&K Chief Minister Farooq Abdullah, Andhra Pradesh Chief Minister N. Chandrababu Naidu, former Bihar Deputy Chief Minister Tejashwi Yadav, DMK working President M.K. Stalin, party leader Kanimozhi, JMM leader Hemant Soren and Jharkhand Vikas Morcha chief Babulal Marandi.

While Gehlot will take the oath as Chief Minister for the third time, Pilot will take the oath for the first time as Deputy Chief Minister.

 

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Voting underway for Haryana municipal polls

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Haryana

Chandigarh, Dec 16:Voting was underway on Sunday for five municipal corporations and committees in Haryana. Only a few voters were seen at polling stations due to the cold weather as elections to the five municipal corporations and committees of Hisar, Rohtak, Yamunanagar, Panipat and Karnal were being held.

Voting started at 7.30 a.m. and will continue till 4.30 p.m., election officials said.

 

The election to the posts of mayors will be held directly for the first time.

A total of 14,01,454 voters are eligible exercise their franchise in 136 wards of the municipal corporations and committees.

The State Election Commission (SEC) said that there are 744,468 are male voters and 656,986 are female voters.

The Haryana Police has made elaborate security arrangements to ensure smooth conduct of the elections.

Over 7,000 police personnel, including women police officials, are on duty.

Officials said that for the first time in the electoral history of municipal elections in the country, none of the above (NOTA) has been introduced as an option in the electronic voting machines (EVMs).

There are 1,292 polling stations for the elections. Out of these, 304 are sensitive and 166 are hyper-sensitive. The highest number of polling stations (303) has been set up in Yamunanagar district.

Director General of Police (DGP) B.S. Sandhu said on Saturday that the entire police administration is fully geared up to conduct free, fair and peaceful elections.

While the ruling Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) and opposition Indian National Lok Dal (INLD) are contesting the elections on their respective party symbols, the Congress has chosen not to use the party symbol for candidates backed by the party.

The elections are being considered important before the 2019 Lok Sabha elections and Assembly polls likely to be held in October 2019.

The BJP has been in power in Haryana since October 2014.(IANS)

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