Floods have forced more than three million people from their homes across north and northeastern India, officials said on Monday, as the death toll in neighbouring Nepal and low-lying Bangladesh rose to 76 after days of heavy monsoon rains.
Worst affected is the northern Indian state of Bihar, where some 1.9 million people have fled their homes due to rising waters, a state government release said.
Television channels showed roads and railway lines in Bihar submerged, with people wading through chest-high, brown, churning waters, carrying their belongings on their heads.
An impoverished agrarian province with rickety infrastructure and poor healthcare services, Bihar has a history of flooding in its northern areas that border Nepal.
Floodwaters in the northeastern Indian state of Assam rose overnight with the Brahmaputra river, which flows down from the Himalayas into Bangladesh, and its tributaries still in spate.
More than 1.7 million people in Assam have been displaced by the floods, authorities said, and most of the Kaziranga National Park, home to the rare one-horned rhino, was also underwater.
“The flood situation has turned very critical with 31 of the 32 districts affected,” Assam Chief Minister Sarbananda Sonowal told reporters. “We are working on a war footing to deal with the flood situation.”
The death toll from floods and landslides triggered by incessant rainfall across Nepal reached 67 on Monday, the Nepal Police confirmed.
The police said in a statement that at least 67 people died in the monsoon-induced disasters, among which 41 were males and 26 were females.
"At least 1,445 people from different districts have been rescued successfully and evacuated to safer destinations," the statement said.
Over 40 people sustained injuries in the disasters who have been receiving treatment in different local hospitals, while at least 32 people went missing.
According to the Home Ministry, around 35,000 people were affected by the disasters particularly in the low-lying areas known as the Terai region.
More than 20 of Nepal's 77 districts were worst-hit due to the floods and landslides.
Nepal Army, Nepal Police and Armed Police Force were deployed in the disaster-hit districts to carry out rescue and relief operations.
Families were displaced after the swollen rivers breached the embankment and gushed into human settlements, especially in Province 2.
Over 13,000 families were displaced in Province 2 alone where around 3,500 houses were completely damaged.
The annual monsoon season, which brings the most rain across south Asia, also hit Bangladesh hard, forcing an estimated 190,000 people out of their homes, government officials said.
In Cox’s Bazar district, shelter to some 700,000 Rohingya refugees who fled violence in neighbouring Myanmar, more than 100,000 people have been displaced.
Since early July, flooding and landslides have damaged thousands of shelters at the refugee camps, killing two people, including a child, Human Rights Watch said in a release last week according to Reuters.