Unprecedented rainfall and flooding in the Assam region of India have destroyed countless homes, killed at least 34 people, and displaced more than 4.2 million, BBC reported on Monday.
The local government has reportedly opened over a thousand relief camps for those displaced by the flooding, but authorities say the camps are in a poor state. This comes after a similar struggle last month when at least 39 people were killed in Assam during harsh weather.
"In Guwahati, the main economic center of Assam, neighborhoods have been reduced to rubble. Lush fields where rice and paddy normally grew have turned into vast swamps of mud and debris," wrote BBC reporters Dilip Kumar Sharma and Zoya Mateen.
"The damage is particularly alarming in Kamrup district, where hundreds of people are still reportedly trapped in their houses," they added.
Assam's Kamrup district and the village of Udiana have been most severely affected by the flooding, with hundreds of Indians trapped in their houses as schools, hospitals, and places of worship are all submerged.
"The situation is particularly alarming this time. Apart from the team of the National Disaster Response Force, we have also deployed the army to aid the rescue operations," an official in Rangiya told the BBC. "At this point, our priority is to save lives."
Jayashree Rout, an environmental science professor at Assam University, warned against immediately linking the intolerable weather to climate change. He instead suggested that researchers first consider other man-made causes.
"There is no doubt that the flood situation this time is very serious, and the frequency of rains is increasing significantly," said Rout. "But before linking it entirely to climate change, we need to take into account human-related factors like deforestation."
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