One million cut off by monsoon floods in northern India

Authorities struggled Monday to get aid to more than one million people stranded by floods in a north Indian state. A local government leader described the situation as a catastrophe, adding the floods had washed away roads and made railway lines impassable. Air force helicopters and troops were trying to get food to people in the stricken areas of Bihar state that were inundated by flood waters last week after torrential rains caused the Kosi river in neighboring Nepal to burst its banks. The Bihar state government issued a plea to relief agencies to step in and help get food and shelter to the residents. "It is not a normal flood, but a catastrophe," said Bihar Chief Minister Nitish Kumar after making an aerial survey of the ravaged districts.