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Deadly Landslide Hits Khalapur in Maharashtra: 16 Fatalities, over 100 Trapped

The area is inaccessible to vehicles due to lack of motorable roads

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Raju Vernekar
Raju Vernekar
Raju Vermekar is a senior Mumbai-based journalist who have worked with many daily newspapers. Raju contributes on versatile topics.

INDIA. Mumbai: Landslide in Maharashtra! While 16 people died in a landslide at Irshalgad in Khalapur taluka of Raigad in Maharashtra on Wednesday night, 119 people are still missing and feared trapped below the debris.

A portion of eroded hillock caved in, spelling doom for a tribal hamlet located on the hillock, known as “Umbarathwadi”, about 71.8 km from Mumbai, on Wednesday night. Soon rescue teams of Navi Mumbai Municipal Corporation (NMMC), NDRF and other agencies rushed to the spot.

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Out of the 228 residents in the village, 93 have been successfully located, and 16 people’s bodies have so far been found. Those who survived included those who had left the village to work on nearby rice plantations. 119 residents are still missing.

Dead: The available names of the dead are Ramesh Hari Bhavar (26), Jayashri Ramesh Bhavar (22), Vinod Bhagwan Bhavar(04), Jija Bhagwan Bhavar (36), Ambi Balu Pardhi (45), Balu Nama Pardhi (52), Sumir Bhaskar Pardhi( 03), Sudam Tukaram Pardhi (18), Dama Bhavar (40), Chandrakant Kisan Wagh( 18), Radhi Rama Bhavar( 37) and Bali Nama Bhutamba (70).

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Injured: Pravin Pandurang Pardi (21), Yashwant Radho More (37), Bhagwan Hari Bhavar( 25), Manisha Yashwant Dore( 35), Rami Ramu Pardhi(77) and Kamli Mahadu Pardhi(50).

Of these, the condition of Pravin Pandurang Pardi and Yashwant Radho More admitted to MGM Hospital at Kamothe in Navi Mumbai, was described as stable by Dr Anand Gosavi, Health Officer of the Panvel Municipal Corporation.

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While the disaster relief teams of NMMC, NDRF, CIDCO and local tracking groups- “Yashwant Trackers” and “Nisarg” from Panvel, are engaged in relief operations, the work is getting hampered since the area is inaccessible by vehicles. The Brihamumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC) has despatched “BobCat” [Blumenfield’s BobCAT (Community Action Team)] to set up make-shift roads since one can reach the affected area only by tracking. Besides, incessant rains have brought the rescue work to a standstill. 

The area is stated to have received 499 mm of rainfall in three days preceding the mishap, accompanied by a cloud burst, which brought down a rock and buried the village.

“The village was not listed as a landslide-prone by the Surveyor General of India,” Deputy Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis told the Maharashtra Legislative Assembly in an ongoing monsoon session on Wednesday.

While the work to rescue the trapped people was on, less attention was paid towards the livestock going through a similar ordeal. However, the tracker Rajesh Sadashiv Bhor and his group rescued a bullock trapped in the debris within a few hours. 

In another unfortunate incident, Assistant Fire Officer Shivram Dhumne (52) of Navi Mumbai Fire Station, who was engaged in rescue operations, died due to a heart attack in harness. He collapsed after tracking some portion of the hillock. He was shifted to the hospital but was declared dead before the admission.

In the meanwhile, a saga of rain-related mishaps has continued in Maharashtra. On July 30, 2014, a landslide in Malin in Ambegaon tehsil in Pune claimed 151 lives.

Similarly, on July 22, 2021, a massive hillock came crashing down on Taliye village in Mahad tehsil of Raigad, killing 85 people. According to environmentalists, illegal quarrying and construction in the Sahyadri hill ranges are leading to landslides during heavy rain.

Also Read: Flash Floods, Landslides Continue to Roil New Zealand for the Third Day

Author

  • Raju Vernekar

    Raju Vermekar is a senior Mumbai-based journalist who have worked with many daily newspapers. Raju contributes on versatile topics.

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