Flooding in eastern India leaves dozens dead

August 21, 2011 - 3:25 AM
India Floods

A village woman pumps drinking water amid floodwaters at Jhikiral village, in Howrah district, in the eastern Indian state of West Bengal, Saturday, Aug. 20, 2011. Flood situation in West Bengal continued to be grim as the death toll shot to 36 Thursday, according to a news agency. India receives much of its rainfall during the monsoon season which lasts from July to September. (AP Photo)

KOLKATA, India (AP) — Dozens of people have died and tens of thousands have been displaced in India's West Bengal state due to heavy rains that have overwhelmed rivers and flooded 15 districts.

The state government says at least 11 people have died since Friday from flood-related causes, including drowning and injury from collapsed homes. A total of 47 people have died in such accidents since the monsoon season began weeks ago in the eastern Indian state.

The government said in a statement Saturday that rivers were still flowing at extremely dangerous levels after local dams were forced to release some of their catchment.

More than 67,000 people are sheltering in 413 relief camps. Vast swaths of farmland have been inundated.