Mandi landslide rescue operation

Monsoon caused Rs.634.87 crore losses, killed 68 people in Himachal so far

Shimla: During the current monsoon season, Himachal Pradesh has faced losses worth Rs. 634.87 crore upto August 30, 2017, and 289 persons were killed. Out this total number, 68 died due to natural calamities and 221 due to accidents, said the government in an official statement.

One of the most tragic incidents was reported in Kotrupi area of Mandi district a few weeks ago in which 48 people were buried alive under the debris of a gigantic landslide. There were several other incidents of landslide where debris or boulders crushed vehicles moving on roads beneath them.

Shimal-Parwanoo fourlane project has also come under fire for unscientific cutting of hills and insufficient measure to prevent landslides.

Other than landslides, so far several incidents of cloudburst also washed away people, houses, roads, and vehicles.

To meet these losses and damages, the government has already released Rs. 193.23 crore to Deputy Commissioners and other departments. during the current financial year. An amount of Rs. 63.23 crore was released for the NDRF and Rs. 130 crore for SDRF, informed Chief Minister Virbhadra Singh while presiding over a meeting of State Disaster Management Authority on September 2.

An amount of Rs. 63.23 crore was released for the NDRF and Rs. 130 crore for SDRF, informed Chief Minister Virbhadra Singh while presiding over a meeting of State Disaster Management Authority on September 2.

The damage and loss of lives suggest spots prone to landslides are rarely identified and no suitable measures are taken even if some of them  are identified. In order to prevent further loss of life and damages to properties, the government will have to wake up and work in the direction to stop unscientific excavation and cutting of hills in cities like Shimla.

On the other hand, the deaths in road accidents point towards black spots and lack of crash barriers. The use of mobile phones while driving and drunken driving particularly during night time also require the attention of the police.

Also, the state desperately needs awareness drives to deal with these issues.

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