Large areas of northern India hit by heavy rainfall

Image copyright Google Maps Image caption The flooding has affected most parts of northern India, Nepal and the Ghillipur area of Uttar Pradesh, India At least 227 people have died and more than a…

Large areas of northern India hit by heavy rainfall

Image copyright Google Maps Image caption The flooding has affected most parts of northern India, Nepal and the Ghillipur area of Uttar Pradesh, India

At least 227 people have died and more than a million are affected by heavy rainfall and flash floods in Uttar Pradesh, India, reports say.

At least 33 people have died in Uttar Pradesh’s Ghazipur district, more than 25 in Uttarakhand, around 3,600 in Meghalaya and more than 10 in Bihar.

One million people have been affected by the flooding, most of them across the Uttar Pradesh border.

A vast area of northern India has received widespread rain and has been hit by landslides, flooding and overflowing rivers.

People have been evacuated to a nearby state-run relief centre in Gorakhpur, said reports from the news agency AFP, citing the local administration.

Image copyright AP Image caption Relief workers spent much of Thursday collecting and decontaminating dead bodies

The Hindu newspaper says the worst affected area is Meghalaya, an Indian state bordering Myanmar.

Torrential rainfall has caused rivers like the Amu to rise and flood villages and villages throughout the state, a local official told AFP.

Flood waters have destroyed houses and cut off access roads, while electricity poles have toppled over, shattering windows and lamp posts in the capital, Jayapura.

“We are on our toes trying to reach out to people affected in remote areas,” operations officer in Meghalaya’s finance ministry, Pravin Rekam told AFP.

Local officials say that more than 600,000 people have been displaced from their homes and 1,200 shelters set up in the state.

Killing fields

Flood victims are being forced to move to safer areas but many are afraid to return home.

Poor drainage systems and a massive inflow of water into the region have made it extremely difficult for water treatment plants to function, the Hindustan Times reported.

Image copyright AFP Image caption The flooding has forced people to trek for hours on foot as flood waters rush towards their communities

One woman, who lived beside the bank of the Meghalaya River, told the BBC the damage she suffered during the floods is “unforgettable”.

“We took shelter in a building, but water [had reached] above the second floor, a message sounded above all thunderstorms warning of continued flooding. It could be heard several times, every time it came it destroyed our door and we were cut off from our world. We had to start the journey by walking on our backs to reach our village which is about six kilometres from here,” she said.

“We had nothing to eat as we could not find bread here. We had to sleep under trees. I don’t think it was possible to keep the bodies on our shoulders, but we did not have the option,” she said.

She said that her relatives were so scared for their lives they killed themselves by jumping into the river.

According to AFP, another flood victim in Meghalaya described a rescue operation with soldiers, as the river rose “killing fields”.

“Now, we are in a corner waiting for rescue operations, but at the same time we [amid] cries from parents and children to join them. My village’s upper storey is under water, but [we] are watching the water from below as rescuers have left us here and not informed us,” she said.

In Nepal, around 42 people were killed by the flooding, which the UN Humanitarian Coordinator said has also affected the neighbouring countries of Bangladesh, Bhutan and Myanmar.

The BBC’s Henry Newman in Kathmandu says the government is hopeful that the incessant rain will ease soon.

Flooding in Uttar Pradesh has had a major impact on the lives of the poor.

We just want a new house to live in: Ten-year-old woman. Floods killed her parents and a brother this year. “Nomination papers have been submitted. Help us build a house,” she told AFP. Image copyright AP Image caption More than a million people are affected in Bihar

More than 3,500 government welfare centres have been opened to help the people affected by the floods, according to reports.

Two people, described as minor, died in Bihar, while 24 were killed in Uttar Pradesh.

Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi has asked the state government to set up more relief camps, as relief and rescue workers are struggling to reach the people affected by the floods, reports say.

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