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Flood situation in Sylhet worsens, 4 lakh people stranded

Continuous heavy rainfall over the past two days has worsened the flood situation in Sylhet for the second time in just 20 days.

Nearly four lakh people in the Sylhet metropolitan area and throughout the district are now stranded.

In the metropolitan area alone, 10,000 people across 15 wards have been affected by flooding, according to Sylhet district administration sources on Tuesday afternoon.

Sylhet experienced the first phase of flooding on May 27, affecting approximately seven lakh people across all upazilas. The water had not fully receded when heavy rainfall and hill torrents hit again on June 15, worsening the situation by Eid day (June 17).

Heavy rainfall on Eid-ul-Azha morning was briefly followed by a recession, but rain resumed from Tuesday dawn, causing significant overflows in all rivers and streams in Sylhet. On Eid day, water levels were above danger points at two river locations. By Tuesday morning, water levels at four rivers were above danger points at six locations.

The Water Development Board in Sylhet reported that by last evening, the Surma River at Kanaighat point was 133 cm above danger levels. At another point in Sylhet, it was 27 cm above. The Kushiyara River was 47 cm above danger levels at Amalshid and 88 cm above at Fenchuganj. Additionally, the Sari River at Sarighat was 33 cm above danger levels.

By Tuesday, 864 villages and localities in Sylhet were inundated, affecting 371,507 people. Within the metropolitan area, 10,000 people remain stranded. To address the crisis, 619 shelters have been opened, including 80 in the metropolitan area.

Low-lying areas of the city are particularly hard-hit, with Shahjalal suburb completely submerged and water reaching neck level in many homes. Other severely affected areas include Jatrapur, Mendibagh, Shibganj, Raingar, Sobhanighat, Kalighat, Kamalgarh, Machimpur, Taltala, Jamtola, Kajirbazar, Madina Market, Akhaliya, and Mezortil. Several important roads within the city are also flooded.

From 6 am Monday to 6 am Tuesday, the Sylhet Meteorological Office recorded 153 mm of rainfall and forecasted continuous heavy rainfall for the next three days.

The district administration is actively working to rescue stranded individuals and has set up control rooms at the district collector’s office and upazila executive offices to monitor the flood situation. Dedicated officers have been appointed in each upazila, and medical teams have been formed at union levels to provide health services to flood victims.

If the heavy rainfall persists, the flood situation in Sylhet is expected to deteriorate further.