“The crisis has only just begun” - ActionAid responds to devastating floods across South Asia

ActionAid is responding to widespread flooding in India, Myanmar and Bangladesh where unprecedented levels of rainfall have left tens of thousands of people homeless and without access to basic necessities such as clean water and food.

Heavy monsoon rain has caused flash flooding and landslides across the region, with entire villages swept away under strong water currents. Vital infrastructure such as homes, roads and bridges has been destroyed and thousands of people are evacuating to temporary shelters.

Whilst heavy are rains are not unusual at this time of year, ActionAid are witnessing usual ‘dry zone’ areas now under water, where people’s livestock has drowned and crops have been decimated. With the monsoon season just beginning, the crisis is only set to deepen with more heavy rain forecast in the coming weeks.

Sonya Ruparel, ActionAid International’s Humanitarian Director said of the crisis,

“We are deeply concerned for the communities we are working with. People living in dry zone areas have been taken by surprise and are unprepared for flooding of this magnitude with women and children most at risk.”

“The situation in Myanmar is particularly worrying where almost 50% of the country’s GDP is from the agricultural industry. With heavy rains destroying huge swathes of crop fields, the flooding is set to devastate the economy and leave thousands of people without an income.”

“The international community must dig deep and support the immediate recovery needs of affected communities, as well as provide long term assistance to those who have lost their livelihood to ensure the economic impact of the agricultural destruction is eased. “

ActionAid is responding in Myanmar, Bangladesh and India by providing temporary shelters for displaced communities, distributing clean water and food, and providing items such as clothing and medicine; as well working with communities to develop alternative sources of livelihood and ensuring women remain protected during their time in refuge.

Editors' notes

For more information or to contact spokespeople on the ground please contact:

Caroline Berger / caroline.berger@actionaid.org / +44 7930 330 526 (Between 08.00 – 20.00 GMT)

Holly Miller / holly.miller@actionaid.org / +61 432 781 294 (Between 20.00 – 08.00 GMT)