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Bangladesh floods: Death toll exceeds 170; over 4,500 displaced as rescue operations continue

Dhaka: At least 4,500 people remained lodged in some 50 shelters in southeastern Bangladesh and more evacuees continue to trickle in as the death toll from ongoing heavy rains touched 170, various sources said.

 Bangladesh floods: Death toll exceeds 170; over 4,500 displaced as rescue operations continue

Heavy rains have triggered a series of landslides and floods in Bangladesh. Reuters

"Close to 4,500 people are living in shelters, which are expected to remain open until 15 July in view of the possibility of further rains and landslides", Efe news quoted Bangladeshi Disaster Management and Relief Secretary Shah Kamal as saying on Tuesday.

In Rangamati, the worst-affected district from where 116 bodies have been recovered so far and four missing persons are feared dead, authorities opened two new shelters on Monday in response to the growing influx of evacuees, the region's Deputy Commissioner Manzurul Mannan said referring to camps run by the army, police and the Red Crescent.

He added that they had sufficient supplies for residents and even for distribution among affected people living outside the camps, who had already received around 2,100 packets, each containing 30 kg of rice.

On Tuesday itself, a fresh batch of over 20 people, who were feeling unsafe in their own homes amid the raging downpour, arrived at the Shahid Abdul Ali Academy camp in Rangamati, adding to the hundreds already living here since early last week when the rains intensified, informed shelter manager Faruk Sufian.

Since the onset of the crisis on 13 June, the weather department has recorded 679 millimeters of rain in the district, including 74 millimeters in the past 24 hours.

Southern Bangladesh is frequently lashed by tropical cyclones at this time of the year, some of which in previous years have hit the country hard, claiming a large number of lives.

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Updated Date: Jun 21, 2017 08:18:26 IST