North East rains: Death toll in Mizoram rises to 29; 3 more casualties in Assam - Hindustan Times
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North East rains: Death toll in Mizoram rises to 29; 3 more casualties in Assam

ByBiswa Kalyan Purkayastha
May 29, 2024 09:17 PM IST

A stone quarry in Aizawl’s Melthum collapsed on Tuesday causing at least 15 deaths, while another landslide near the Mizoram capital resulted in 14 more deaths

The number of deaths due to landslides in Mizoram has climbed to 29 as heavy downpour continues in the state as per the latest reports. In Assam, three more deaths due to heavy rainfall and landslides were reported on Wednesday.

A view of graves after being swept away in a landslide, amid heavy rain in the aftermath of Cyclone Remal in Mizoram’s Aizawl district, on Wednesday. (PTI)
A view of graves after being swept away in a landslide, amid heavy rain in the aftermath of Cyclone Remal in Mizoram’s Aizawl district, on Wednesday. (PTI)

A stone quarry in Aizawl’s Melthum collapsed on Tuesday causing at least 15 deaths, while another landslide near the Mizoram capital resulted in 14 more deaths, according to the disaster management officials.

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Aizawl superintendent of police Rahool Alwal said that 29 bodies have been recovered so far and several others are still missing. “Of the 29, 15 were recovered from Methum. Three bodies were found at Aizawl’s Salem Veng locality, two each at Falkawn and Aibawk villages,” he said.

Among the deceased persons, 23 were Mizoram residents and five were labourers from Jharkhand and one was from Assam’s Silchar town. One of them was a four-year-old boy while another one was a six-year-old girl, Alwal said.

After the incident happened on Tuesday morning, a massive rescue operation was launched and forces like National Disaster Response Force (NDRF), State Disaster Response Force (SDRF), police, and fire departments have been deployed, said deputy commissioner of Aizawl, Nazuk Kumar.

“The search and rescue operations are still on and will continue till all missing persons are found,” she said.

Chief minister Lalduhoma on Wednesday visited the sites in Aizawl and assured adequate assistance from the government’s side. He was accompanied by home Minister K Sapdanga, who is also a minister for Disaster Management & Rehabilitation along with officials from various government departments.

He also attended a meeting at the District Disaster Operation Centre in Aizawl and said that he has already sanctioned 15 crore from the Disaster Mitigation Fund for the disaster response initiatives.

Additionally, he gave 50,000 to the Melthum Branch Young Mizo Association (YMA), a students’ association who are supporting the security forces in the rescue operations. He also handed over the amount of ex-gratia to the family members of eight victims.

Police said that the dead bodies have been sent for postmortem process and those will be handed over to the family members. Officials said that after identifying the deceased persons, their family members are being informed about it.

As per the state government reports, around 28 houses have been swept away by the landslides and floods in Mizoram. 21 families were forced to relocate due to flooding from the Tlawng River.

In Assam, three children died on Wednesday, one in Kamrup district and two in Dhubri. According to the Assam State Disaster Management Authority (ASDMA), 13 districts are affected by storms while erosions were reported in Cachar and some other areas.

Due to landslides in Dima Hasao district, the road and railway connectivity between Barak Valley and the rest of Assam has been disrupted. As per the ASDMA’s report, six portions of National Highway-27 are damaged.

The Northeast Frontier Railway (NFR) has cancelled several trains running along Badarpur and Guwahati route after the tracks in Dima Hasao district were severely damaged by the heavy rainfall and landslides. Officials said that restoration works are going on, but the heavy rainfall is preventing them.

The water level of all the major rivers including Brahmaputra, Barak, Kushiyara, Kopili have crossed the danger marks and there is a flood-warning across the state, according to the officials.

In Silchar, the controversial Betukandi embankment created tension among the locals after the water of Barak river started entering the Silchar town on Wednesday afternoon. However, the local MLA Dipayan Chakraborty took some prompt action, and many jio-bags were used to stop the water.

Chakraborty said that a flood-like situation has arisen, and they have asked the security forces to be ready. “We had a presentation meeting and discussed the important issues. Especially about the areas which are more vulnerable. We have appealed to the common people to stay away from flood tourism (going out to see the flood situation) and stay safe at homes,” he said.

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