Francine Uenuma 202.640.6810 (O), 202.450.9153 (M)
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.
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