Bangladesh said Saturday that 138,000 people died in the cyclone that ravaged its southeastern coast, and news reports said surging rivers had driven another 150,000 people from their homes.

At least eight people drowned Saturday in the flooding that swept away thousands of homes, newspapers said.A moderate earthquake also shook the hills of eastern Bangladesh Saturday, the latest in a numbing chain of natural disasters to strike this impoverished land since the April 30 killer cyclone. There were no immediate reports of damage or casualties from the quake, which measured 4.9 on the Richter scale.

Saturday's earthquake struck just across the border in India, about 55 miles southeast of Sylhet, at 8:15 a.m., said S.N. Chatterjee, a seismologist with the Indian Meteorology Department in New Delhi.

Chatterjee said a quake of that magnitude could cause some buildings to crack, and was probably felt over a wide area.

President Bush on Saturday dispatched an amphibious task force with thousands of Marines and dozens of helicopters to help Bangladesh with disaster relief efforts.

The White House said that the U.S. aid was being provided in response to a request from Bangladesh. The helicopters will be used to deliver food and medicine to survivors. The task force also includes Navy construction crews to help rebuild homes and bridges swept away by rising waters.

Opposition legislators in Dhaka walked out on a parliamentary debate on cyclone devastation Saturday, protesting what they called the government's mishandling of relief measures to the millions of people left homeless.

"We have offered to cooperate with the government in conducting a coordinated relief work. But the government does not seem interested in accepting our offer," said Sheik Hasina, an opposition leader.

Prime Minister Khaleda Zia has so far rejected the opposition's demand for a united disaster relief committee. She missed the session, instead touring two towns near Dhaka that were hit by tornadoes last week.

Information Secretary Manzoor-e-Mowla told reporters the death toll from the cyclone stands at 138,868 - up by more than 13,000 from the government's last update six days ago. He said the toll could rise again "if we get further information."

Mowla also asked for more foreign aid, saying Bangladesh has received only $217 million so far.

At least 118 people have died in tornadoes and floods since the cyclone and accompanying tidal wave rushed ashore from the Bay of Bengal. The foul weather has caused destruction in virtually every part of the country.

The latest floods were in the area around Sylhet, 120 miles northeast of Dhaka. The region is one of the few hilly parts of Bangladesh and becomes a funnel for rain-swollen rivers that cascade down the Himalayan mountains in neighboring India.

Saturday's earthquake struck just across the border in India, about 55 miles southeast of Sylhet, at 8:15 a.m., said S.N. Chatterjee, a seismologist with the Indian Meteorology Department in New Delhi.

The New Nation, an independent Dhaka daily, said six people, mostly children and teenagers, drowned from flooding in the Sylhet region. Another independent newspaper, the Bangladesh Observer, said two more people died when their houses collapsed in the swirling floodwaters.

The newspapers, along with other Dhaka dailies, said about 150,000 people were marooned by floodwaters from mighty rivers that burst their man-made embankments in dozens of places.