July 1, 2005

India flood death toll rises to 94

AHMEDABAD, India (Reuters) - Nearly a hundred people havebeen killed and around 200,000 displaced by severe flooding inwestern India in the past week, officials said on Friday.

Hundreds of people waited for help on rooftops and atop atrain as authorities in Gujarat state pressed the army intoservice to help move people to higher ground.

"My home has been swept away and my cattle have perished.The water level has risen overnight and we are moving around inboats," said Pratap Maisuriya of Punjapadar village in Amrelidistrict, one of the worst hit regions.

Weather officials said heavy monsoon rains would continuein the state for the next few days.

"Due to the situation we have sought urgent assistance fromthe central (federal) government as the situation is verygrim," said state minister Kaushik Patel, adding 94 people haddied due to the flooding in the past week.

Flooding is common during India's June-September monsoonseason but it mostly occurs in northern and eastern India wherelarge rivers such as the Ganges and Brahmaputra flow.