Natural disasters, heavy floods and cyclones displaced around 2.5 million within India in 2022, according to the Geneva-based Internal Displacement Monitoring Centre.
South Asia as a whole witnessed 12.5 million internal displacements due to disasters last year, with 90 per cent of it caused by floods.
“All countries recorded flood displacement but Pakistan, India and Bangladesh were the most affected. Most movements occurred during the southwest monsoon between June and September,” the report said.
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Last year, India and Bangladesh experienced flooding even before the official onset of the monsoon.
Assam was ravaged by early floods in May and the same areas were flooded again in June, affecting some five million people.
Torrential rains in India in May caused rivers to overflow in Bangladesh, triggering nearly 5,500 displacements.
Storms led to around 1.1 million internal displacements in South Asia in 2022.
Cyclone Sitrang caused 66,000 displacements in Odisha and West Bengal, cyclone Asani triggered 1,500 displacements in Andhra Pradesh while cyclone Mandous affected 9,500 in Tamil Nadu.
The frequency of extreme weather events like floods and heat waves is projected to rise manifold in India in the future due to climate change, according to a report by the Indian Institute of Technology, Gandhinagar.
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Climate change has increased the instability in the atmosphere, leading to an increase in convective activity — thunderstorms, lightning and heavy rain events.
India recorded 2,227 human casualties due to extreme weather events in 2022. The death toll stood at 1,750 in 2021 and 1,338 in 2020, according to the India Meteorological Department.
(With agency inputs)