Tribute to Dhemaji Flood Victims!

August 15, 2011 at 9:42 pm (North East India)

Seven years ago, on this very day 13 people (10 children and 3 women) lost their lives in Dhemaji district of Assam during a flag hoisting ceremony to celebrate Independence day. As I have mentioned in my previous post, extremists group ULFA was behind the blast which took those lives. Today, when the whole country was celebrating Independence day, 8 persons lost their lives in the same district Dhemaji in front of many others as well as media who were taking live coverage of the incident. However today’s  incident is not same as the one that happened seven years back. Today’s incident is perhaps more common in Dhemaji in the sense that everyday during summer/monsoon people are losing their lives out of which probably less than 1% get such media coverage. Yes, I am talking about flood and Dhemaji is perhaps the worst flood-affected district of Assam. Today eight persons were trying to save their lives in Dhemaji during sudden outburst of flood by Gai river. They struggled for four long hours by taking various measures like holding to a tree, and media were taking live coverage for hours. Ultimately the poor tree could not stand against the speedy flow of Gai river and all those persons were washed away with the tree. Unfortunately and not so surprisingly  not a single effort from administration was seen there, although there were enough time to save those lives. May be everyone was busy with flag hoisting and singing  national anthem to celebrate Independence day. May be celebration is more important for them than saving lives of a few common men. This incident should not surprise anyone, specially those who are from Assam or North East India, as such things have been happening all the time there. The only difference is that, private television media has reached out to them this time : a symbol of development, may be! Unfortunately national media never publish these news, they did so much when there was flood in Bihar few years back, launched so many campaigns to raise funds etc, but the story of Dhemaji has always remained untold. However, if these eight members were killed in a bomb blast during independence day celebration like it happened seven years back, I am sure the news would have come in the first page of any national newspaper. I remember I saw the news of the blast killing 13 people in 2004 in a digital display board on the roadside in New Delhi. So whom will you blame? The government who never take any step to solve the flood problem or the media who publishes some news for their benefit and discard others which are not fit for their so called  “masala news” tag. Anyway, I pray for those victims who lost their lives today and hope to see some improvements in the flood situation very soon!

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