for ISKCON News on June 6, 2013
Rising rivers menaced swaths of Germany, the Czech Republic and Austria this week, as floodwaters inundated historic cities and forced mass evacuations of low-lying areas.
The floods are feared to be the worst since 2002, when parts of Germany and the Czech Republic were devastated.
Seven deaths have been reported in the Czech Republic, while southern and eastern areas of Germany, including Bavaria and Saxony, are also badly impacted by recent heavy rains.
The historic old town of Passau, a city in southern Germany where the Danube River is joined by two other rivers, got ravaged after water levels passed a 500-year-old record.
Floodwaters in Bavaria are now receding but the crest on the Danube continues east into Austria and could threaten cities such as Vienna, in Austria, and Bratislava, in Slovakia, and Budapest in Hungary.
The Hungarian Parliament area in Budapest on June 5th
While the Danube floodwater level is expected to reach its highest point on Saturday, June 8th, ISKCON devotees are helping those getting prepared to protect the inhabited areas.
Volunteers filling up sand bags near the river Danube
Responding to the call by the Government of Hungary, ISKCON Hungary has pledged to provide 600 plates of free vegetarian meal daily to the dedicated volunteers, officials, firefighters and army, working hard day and night on reinforcing the permanent and temporary dams along the river Danube.
Students and volunteers working during the night on reinforcing the dam
The Budapest Hare Krishna temple is the vicinity of one of the most endangered area, where there is a likelihood of getting tens of thousands of people evacuated from in the next few days.
If the necessity arises, devotees are prepared to increase their food distribution or other services.
ISKCON devotees provide free lunch for firefighters defending the city from flood north of Budapest