Assam Flood 2014 Case Study

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Seasonal monsoon rains starting at the end of June 2014 triggered river overflows in India's north-eastern State of Assam, causing damage and evacuations (ECHO, 26 Jun 2014). Starting in mid-July, flooding in eastern India killed three people and forced thousands of families from their homes. Around 10,000 people were evacuated to cyclone shelters in Odisha state's worst-hit district of Jajpur after a major river burst its banks, flooding 30 villages. (Reuters, 22 Jul 2014) By 24 Jul, over 25,000 people had been affected in 42 villages across Assam in a second round of floods (Times of India, 24 Jul 2014).

In the beginning of September, heavy rain in Jammu and Kashmir caused severe flooding, the state’s worst in 50 years. Ten districts are heavily affected, almost 150 people reported dead, and a number of districts are not reachable yet. In the region of Jammu, landslides triggered by heavy rainfall have caused serious damages to infrastructure and agricultural land. The army has launched a major rescue operation and has reportedly rescued over 200,000 people. However, over 100,000 people are still marooned in their houses, with no access to food or clean water. (IFRC, 18 Sep 2014)

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This research investigates the impacts of the repetitive flooding on the inhabitants of the four flood-prone districts in Thailand’s central province of Ayutthaya: Pranakorn Si Ayutthaya, Sena, Bang Ban, and Pak Hai. In addition, the residents’ satisfaction levels with the flood relief efforts and operations of the local authorities were examined and analyzed. The research revealed that most local residents have adapted to co-exist with the repetitive floods, an example of which is the elevation of the houses a few meters above the ground where the living quarter is on the upper level. The findings also indicated that the repetitive flooding incurred substantial post-flood repair costs, in light of the low income-earning capabilities of the locals. However, the flood-recovery financial aids was incommensurate with the actual expenditures, contributing to the lowest average satisfaction score among the inhabitants with regard to the adequacy of the post-flood repair and restoration financial aid. Furthermore, the research identified the differences between districts on the satisfaction with the flood relief efforts. The disparity could be attributed to the extent of coordination and participation of the local residents and their local leaders in the flood-related measures.

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