New Delhi: Flood rescue and relief operations continue with full force in Bihar, with the Centre's National Disaster Response Force (NDRF) stepping up the scale on Thursday. State authorities have pegged the total death toll in the state at 73.

While flood waters have yet to recede, rescue forces have been trying to mechanically drain out the water from the affected regions. The NDRF and Sashastra Seema Bal (SSB) teams have been deployed in Patna city.

Pratyaya Amrit, Principal Secretary of Disaster Management Department (Bihar) said, "According to yesterday's estimates, 73 people died and 9 were injured due to floods. The pump we brought from Coal India had technical issues. If it starts working today, we'll clear the water from Rajendra Nagar area (in Patna)." Teams have been working to rescue locals stranded due to flood in the area, one of the worst hit.

S. N. Pradhan, the director general of NDRF said, "Orange alert (issued by IMD) is there but as the situation stands now, weather wise, it is very normal in Patna and five other districts of Bihar. This is good for relief and rescue operations and NDRF teams will continue to work till life returns back to near normal."

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