Monsoons leave three million stranded in India

Rescuers struggled to provide aid today to nearly three million people affected by monsoon floods that have ravaged eastern India, killing at least 54 people.

Rescuers struggled to provide aid today to nearly three million people affected by monsoon floods that have ravaged eastern India, killing at least 54 people.

More than five days of near-constant rains in the region have triggered landslides, blocked major highways and sent thousands of villagers fleeing for higher ground.

In the state of West Bengal, where the death toll has risen to 25, more than two million people in the worst-affected areas are stranded in their villages.

More than 50,000 people have been moved to government shelters on higher ground.

Five Indian air force helicopters spent the day dropping food packets in the flood-hit areas.

Floods in neighbouring Orissa state have stranded more than more than 800,000 in about 300 villages and left two people dead.

In the past week, 19 deaths were reported from landslides and house collapses in Arunachal Pradesh state, while eight fatalities were reported in the state of Assam.

Monsoon rains usually hit India from June to September. Farmers depend on them for their crops, which feed hundreds of millions of people in the country.

However, the monsoons also bring massive destruction to the country.

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