Estimated 65,000 Children Displaced by India Floods

Thousands of children and their families have been left stranded in mountains by heavy monsoon rains that swept through the northern Indian state of Uttarakhand, Save the Children reported today.

Two children stand next to their washed-away home. Their family received relief supplies at Rudraprayag. Photo by Save the Children

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WASHINGTON, D.C. (July 1, 2013) — The death toll from the devastating floods that hit India's northern state of Uttarakhand nearly two weeks ago could be as high as 10,000, the state's assembly speaker Govind Singh Kunjwal said this weekend. The official death toll has now passed 1,000.

An estimated 150,000 people, including 65,000 children, are thought to have been displaced by the floods. Save the Children has carried out assessments in two areas and has begun to distribute food and hygiene kits to more than 100 families. Save the Children expects to support 5,000 families.

Local villagers have told Save the Children that thousands of bodies are still lying out in the open, unattended. Decomposition has set in and because the bodies cannot be moved, cremation needs to be carried out on the spot. But there is not enough wood to carry out this task, creating public health concerns in parts of the region.

Save the Children is the leading independent organization for children in need, with programs in more than 120 countries, including the United States. We aim to inspire breakthroughs in the way the world treats children, and to achieve immediate and lasting change in their lives by improving their health, education and economic opportunities. In times of acute crisis, we mobilize rapid assistance to help children recover from the effects of war, conflict and natural disasters. Follow us on Twitter and Facebook.

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