After showing a rising trend amid heavy downpour and onrush from the upstream in the last few days, the water levels in many of the rivers in the Ganges basin started receding on Thursday, signaling improvement of the flood situation in the northern region within the next couple of days.
Of the total 30 river points being monitored in Ganges basin regularly, water levels decreased at 20 stations, while increased at nine stations and remained stable at one point at 9am today, creating a hope of reducing the plight of the flood-affected people in the char (shoal) and other low-lying areas.
The rivers were flowing below the danger level at 22 points, while above danger mark at seven points this morning.
Local office of Bangladesh Water Development Board (BWDB) has recorded a falling trend of water levels at the points of Pankha, Rajshahi, Hardinge Bridge and Talbaria in the past 24 hours ending at 9am, Mukhlesur Rahman, Superintending Engineer of BWDB, told BSS.
Water levels of the Ganges River decreased by 3cm each at Pankha in Chapainawabganj and Talbaria points, 4cm at Rajshahi and 8cm at Hardinge Bridge points while the level in the Padma River decreased by 12cm at Goalanda point, he said.
The Ganges River was flowing 167cm, 160cm and 83cm below the danger level at Pankha, Rajshahi and Hardinge Bridge points respectively, Mukhlesur added.
Besides, the water level of the Korotoa River and the Jamuna River under the Brahmaputra Basin which flow in Bogura and Sirajganj districts have seen a receding trend this morning, signaling further improvement in the flood situation in the two districts within the next couple of days.
Arifuzzaman Bhuiyan, executive engineer of Flood Forecasting and Warning Centre (FFWC), said the water level in the Korotoa River decreased by two cm at Bogura point while decreased by five cm at Chak Rahimpur. The river was flowing 148 cm and 34 cm below the danger mark at the two stations respectively this morning.
The Jamuna River further receded by 15 cm at Sariakandi in Bogura, 14 cm at Kajipur in Sirajganj and 13 cm at Sirajganj point and the river was still flowing 67 cm, 48 cm and 47 cm above the danger mark at Sariakandi, Kazipur and Sirajganj points respectively.
He also said the water level in the Gur River decreased by six cm at Shingra point in Natore district and the river was flowing 84 cm above the danger mark.
The Atrai River was flowing 84 cm above the danger level at Baghabari point in Sirajganj district with a 10 cm fall afresh this morning.
Water level in the Mohananda River further receded by seven cm at Rohanpur point in Chapainawabganj district and the river was flowing 86 cm below the danger mark.
The Atrai River was still flowing four cm above the danger mark at Atrai point in Naogaon with a seven cm fall afresh while 316 cm below the danger mark with four cm reduction at Mohadevpur point in Naogaon.
Of the 15 river points both in Ganges and Brahmaputra Basins, monitored in almost all eight districts under Rajshahi division, water levels decreased at all the points.
Meanwhile, the Department of Health has undertaken all-possible measures to prevent any outbreak of water-borne diseases among the marooned people in the flood-affected areas amid the novel coronavirus (Covid-19) pandemic.
Divisional Director of Health Dr Gopendra Nath Acharya told BSS that 658 medical teams are working in 101 flood affected unions under 18 upazilas in the division. Besides, 18 flood shelters were opened in Bogura district.
He added that 50 unions in Sirajganj, 19 in Pabna, 17 in Bogura, 10 in Naogaon and five in Natore districts are the worst affected ones.
He said they have also recorded 1,628 other patients suffering from various other flood-related diseases including 68 diarrheal and nine respiratory tract infections since July 1 last.
Moinul Islam, Additional Divisional Commissioner of Rajshahi, said the district and upazila administrations with the local public representatives have further intensified relief activities in the worst-affected areas.
He also said the district administrations and BWDB are closely monitoring the situation and taking instant steps when and where necessary during the deluge in Rajshahi division.