Deep depression swamps BD: Tide in 14 coastal villages | Greenwatch Dhaka | The leading online daily of Bangladesh

Deep depression swamps BD: Tide in 14 coastal villages


Dhaka -Incessant heavy downpour left Dhaka city life in disarray creating traffic chaos and water-logging at many points on Monday.
Dhaka saw 132mm (6.5 inches) rainfall in 24 hours till 6pm on Monday, said M Aftab Uddin, a meteorologist at Bangladesh Meteorological Department.
He said the city experienced very heavy rain for six hours — from 12pm to 6pm — as they recorded 62 mm rains during the period.Major Dhaka city thoroughfares, including Mirpur, Kazi Nazrul Islam Avenue, Hatirjheel, Panthapath, Shahbagh, Paltan, Motijheel, Gulshan and Baridhara, Dhanmondi, Banani, Kakrail, Rampura saw serious traffic snarls.
A report from India said, a prevailing low-pressure area in the Bay of Bengal beat all forecasts to intensity with blinding speed into a deep depression overnight and crossed Bangladesh coast early this morning.
This had escalated the strength of the system to only a notch below tropical cyclone status, as the deep depression crossed the Bangla coast near Khepupara between 4.30 am and 5.30 am.
No weather model had forecast this scale of intensification, since it is rare for systems beyond depression to take birth in the Bay or the Arabian Sea once the monsoon has established.
India Met Department (IMD) had yesterday put out a watch for the ‘well-marked low’ in the Bay to become a depression today and apparently hoped it would drop anchor there.
But outlook from a few centres, including the US National Centres for Environmental Predictions, had pointed towards a ‘flare-up’ during the weekend around the Bengal-Bangladesh coast.
Still, it was unimaginable that the Bay would host a deep depression, even if fleetingly, at a time when the monsoon had established itself over the country and the neighbouring seas.
Meanwhile, a reliable US weather tracker as also the European Centre for Medium-range Weather Forecasts looked to the Bay for signs for another building ‘low’ in a week’s time.
This ‘low’ would help reorganise the monsoon flows in the Bay and train a bulk of them to steer themselves and head back into East India, and not stray into Bangladesh.
“It usually takes me 30-40 minutes by motorbike to reach my office at Gulshan from Sewrapara, but today it took around 1 and a half hours due to rain and huge traffic flow,” said a private firm executive.
Talking to UNB, traffic sergeant Mohammad Ali in the city’s Shahbagh area said the traffic situation is worsening gradually as the eid is getting nearer. “It’s now become very difficult for us to mange the terrific load as people are now on shopping spree.”
Another traffic sergeant wishing anonymity said uncontrolled occupation of footpaths on different major roads by hawkers and street vendors, makeshift outlets of different hotels and small traders on the footpaths and streets are contributing to the city’s worsening traffic situation.
Huge traffic gridlocks were seen in front of Bashundhara City Shopping Mall, Eastern Plaza, Elephant Road, Bangabazar, New Market, Gausia, Ramna Bhaban, Rapa Plaza, Shimanto Square, Mouchak Market, Jamuna Future Park areas with the rush of shoppers.
Meanwhile, the rain caused immense sufferings to the city commuters.
Commuters, office-goers and students of schools and colleges and eid shoppers, faced severe difficulties in reaching their destinations for lack of transport and traffic jam.
Many roads were waterlogged due to the rain while rickshaw pullers and CNG drivers were seen demanding extra fares from passengers during the rain intensifying their woes.
Over 14 villages in the coastal district of Bhola have been flooded as the embankment broke down at two points, leaving around 45,000 people marooned.
According to local people, some seven villages under Tajumuddin upazila and seven villages under Monpura upazila were submerged as tidal wave three-four feet higher than normal tide hit the embankment, which was built to save the island-district from the seawater.
They said the gusty wind and tidal waves, created due to a depression over the Bay of Bengal, are flowing over the district for the last two days.
Around 15,000 villagers have become marooned as the embankment surrounding the district broke down in Choumohoni area under Chandpur union on Sunday night, flooding seven villages – Baliakandi, Dewanpur, Ghosher Howla, Dokkhin Shibpur, Indra Narayanpur, Chapri and Dalalkandi.
Meanwhile, the embankment also broke down at Hajirhat union under Monpura upazila flooding seven more villages where over 30,000 people have also become marooned.
Hajirhat union parishad chairman Dipak Chowdhury said most of the part of the union went under water and people’s sufferings know no bounds.
“Two unions – Monpura and Hajirhat – of the upazila have been flooded by tidal waves. We have informed about the matter Bangladesh Water Development Board (BWDB) to repair the dam soon,” said Monpura upazila Chairman Selina Akter Chowdhury.
Contacted, Bangladesh Water Development Board (Division 2) Deputy Assistant Engineer Abul Kalam told the media, “Although the continuous stormy weather is hampering the repair work of the dam, our contractors and workers are trying their level best to complete the job using modern machinery.”
Maritime ports of Chittagong, Cox’s Bazar, Mongla and Payra have been asked to hoist local cautionary signal no. three as a land depression over Bhola and adjoining area moved North Eastwards.
It lies over Comilla and adjoining areas as a land depression at 12pm on Monday, said a Met office bulletin.
It is likely to move in a North-Northeasterly direction further inland, said a met office bulletin.
Under the influence of the land depression, deep convection is continuing and steep pressure gradient lies over North Bay.
Gusty or squally weather may affect the maritime ports, North Bay and adjoining coastal areas of Bangladesh.
All fishing boats and trawlers over North Bay have been advised to remain in shelter till further notice.
According to a Met office special bulletin, rain or thunder showers accompanied by temporary gusty or squally wind is likely to occur at most places over Dhaka, Mymensingh, Khulna, Barisal, Chittagong and Sylhet divisions and at many places over Rajshahi and Rangpur divisions with heavy to very heavy falls at places over Khulna, Barisal, Dhaka, Mymensingh, Chittagong & Sylhet divisions on Monday.
Due to very heavy rainfall, it said, landslides may occur at places over the hilly regions of Chittagong and Sylhet divisions.- GreenWatch News Desk with UNB, Agencies


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