Calcutta and a large area of West Bengal were paralysed this weekend by widespread flooding following four days of heavy Monsoon rains.
M/LS flooded streets from vehicle (3 shots)
M/LS vehicle through floodwater
MS people walking through flooded street
MS army boat with soldiers dishing out rations in rural area (6 shots)
LS peasants and bullocks through flooded street
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Background: Calcutta and a large area of West Bengal were paralysed this weekend by widespread flooding following four days of heavy Monsoon rains. By yesterday (Saturday), the death toll in the flooding had risen to 17 and an estimated half million people were made homeless or marooned.
In Calcutta and surrounding districts, rivers burst their banks after 15 1/2 inches (40 cms) of rain had fallen. The city was almost completely cut off from the rest of the country, with telecommunications, road, rail and air traffic disrupted.
Army units were called in by the state government to help in relief and rescue operations. Officials said the flood situation was the worst for over 70 years.
In Calcutta, itself, over 30,000 people have been evacuated from their homes, including, 10,000 slum dwellers. Many of the dead were children.