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Pics: Monsoon fury in Himachal kills 19 in 36 hours, hit 923 roads including 6 NHs

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Heavy Monsoon rain in Himachal wreak havoc

Shimla: During the past three days, Himachal Pradesh witnessed the wrath of heavy rain as about 18 people were killed with the highest eight casualties in Solan district. Shimla, as per the Meteorological Department, has received 172 mm rainfall in 24 hours – which is the second highest for the month of August after 1901.p;

In Solan, a landslide buried a family of four with their home. The water levels in rivers and rivulets of the State were recorded very high. The dams are also releasing water into the rivers after the heavy downpour.

Shimla witnessed felling of over 70 trees and several landslides that buried about three dozen vehicles and caused damage to several others.

A major landslide was also reported on Mehli-Shoghi bypass near Beolia in Shimla that buried several cars.
cars buried under Landslide

Several houses/jhuggi’s were also taken down by heavy rain in Krishna Nagar of Shimla in which over 30 people were said to have rendered homeless. It was alleged that these people did not get any considerable relief from the district administration. 

Heavy rain uproots trees in Shimla

Near Phagali on Shimla-Dhali Bypass

The traffic was choked on Shimla-Chandigarh and Manali-Chandigarh NH too due to which tourists, as well as locals, remain stuck in traffic for several hours.

The rains also hit the railway services on the Kalka-Shimla track due to which all trains were cancelled. There were reports of fresh landslides in Shimla-Chandigarh NH on Tuesday. The traffic flow also remained disrupted on Tuesday as well. 

In some parts, felling of trees caused damage to power supply lines resulting in a blackout.   

Krishnanagar homes damaged by rain

Houses collapsed as land caves in

About 923 roads were closed due to landslides in the state including six national highways and about 1,000 others were also affected temporarily.

The government said that work of restoration and clearance of roads is underway and assured relief by Tuesday evening.

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As per the information received at the state headquarters, 19 casualties have been reported so far from various districts including one each in Bilaspur and Una districts, two in Hamirpur, four in Mandi and eight in Solan district.

The rain has also caused losses to farmers as well as apple growers. The blockage of roads caused huge inconvenience to trucks carrying apple crops.

Rain damages in Himachal Pradesh 2018

Educational institutes remained closed for August 13 and 14 keeping in view the prediction of bad weather.

Tourists and locals were advised not to go along river-banks and district administrations were told to keep a close vigil on tracking activities.

As per the Deputy Commissioner, Kullu, the Manali national highway was blocked due to constant landslides.

In Kangra district, traffic was affected on 85 roads and most of these were cleared by Monday evening. Pathankot-Mandi road was cleared for light vehicles and the people stranded in Lambagaon were rescued by the administration.

In Hamirpur district, two casualties were reported in Bhoranj area due to landslips. The DC informed that 50 roads have been reopened for traffic and remaining 13 roads would be restored by tomorrow.

Deputy Commissioner Solan informed that eight casualties have been reported in Solan district. In all, 102 roads have been damaged in the district out of which traffic has been restored on 62 roads. The Kumarhatti-Nahan road has also been reopened for light vehicles.

In Bilaspur district, Swarghat national highway and Bilaspur-Shimla road have also been made through for traffic while the work on restoring the interior roads was in progress.

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In Kinnaur district, Maling Nallah and Skibba roads have been restored and the road to Sangla valley would also be made through by today evening where few tourists are stranded.

In Lahaul-Spiti district, Sumdo-Kaza-Gramphu road is blocked due to landslide and Meling-Kaza road has been restored.

One casualty has been reported in Mandi district and the vehicular traffic has been suspended as water approached the main road near Hanogi on national highway-21.

The Government of Himachal Pradesh has released Rs. 96.50 crore for relief and rescue operation in the state following losses to human life and the property due to heavy rainfall during last 24 hours.

The government has so far released Rs. 229 crores since April 1, 2018, and more funds would be released as per the requirement of the districts.

No Heavy Rains During Next 5 Days: Met

However, the Meteorological Department has predicted that there was no possibility of heavy rainfall in the state in the next five days.

A few places over middle and low hills and at isolated places over higher reaches in the next three days could witness light-to-moderate rainfall is likely to occur at, said Manmohan Singh, director, Meteorological Centre, Shimla.

 

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Himachal: Cloudbursts, Landslides Claim 9 Lives in 48 Hours, 7 Still Missing, Met Issues Alert Till August 1st  

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monsoon damage in himachal pradesh 2021

Shimla-Monsoon continues to pummel Himachal Pradesh with deadly ferocity, leading to more cloudbursts, landslides, and flash floods. Several rivers and rivulets are in spate. Incessant rains could bring more destruction as the HP Meteorological Department has forecast widespread heavy rains till August 1st. While a red alert was issued for July 28, an orange alert has been issued for July 29 and July 30 and a yellow alert for July 31st and August 1st.

An advisory has been issued for locals and tourists to not venture near the river banks and avoid unnecessary travel as incessant rains could lead to more landslides, flash floods, and uprooting of trees.  However, tourists could be seen resolutely ignoring these warnings and partying near river banks and water bodies.

As devastation unfolds, the death toll due to monsoon induced calamities has reached nearly 200, while damages to property were assessed to be in hundreds of crores. Over 350 roads, including Manali-Leh, Pathankot-Chamba, and Shimla-Kalka, were blocked due to landslides.  Half a dozen bridges, as many as 30 houses and several vehicles were destroyed. Hundreds of tourists were reportedly struck in Lahaul.

lahaul-spiti cloudburst

After a flash flood in Dharamshala, a massive landslide in Shahpur constituency, and a horrid rockslide in Kinnaur district that killed nine tourists and injured four people, a cloudburst triggered a flash flood in Lahaul-Spiti district on Tuesday that washed away over a dozen of people, who were said to be labourers.  

cloudburst in lahaul-spiti

According to the Director of the State Disaster Management, Sudesh Kumar, at the time of writing this report, seven bodies had been recovered while four others were missing. The cloudburst occurred over Tonzin nallah in the Lahaul region of the tribal district. Rescue operations were in progress to trace missing persons.

A team of the National Disaster Response Force, which was on its way to Lahaul-Spiti through road, remained stuck in Mandi for several hours.  

On Wednesday morning, cloudburst was reported in Kullu district resulting in deluging of Bhramhaganga – a tributary of Parvati river. A  tourist, a 25-year-old mother along with her 4-year-old son, and a hydropower official came in its spate and were yet to be traced. Beas river was also in spate and people living in shanties on its bank were evacuated. 

Beas in spate

Rackham area in Kinnaur district also reported heavy losses due to a cloudburst on Wednesday morning.

While a rockslide killed one person in Chamba’s Saluni, a helper tagged with a JCB deployed for clearing Bharmaur-Pathankot National Highway was swept away by gushing waters of a nullah on Tuesday night. His body was recovered on Wednesday.

In Shimla, a landslide between Vikasnagar and Panthaghati crushed a vehicle and caused damaged to some others. Gumma khud in Chirgaon was also in spate and reportedly swept away a bridge and about four vehicles. 

landslide in shimla crushed car

Dharamsala received the highest 122 mm of rain, followed by Una 119 mm. In Solan district, Kasauli and Nalagarh also received over 105 mm rain. 

This widespread destruction has worried climatologists and environmentalists who are linking increased instances of landslides and cloudburst to environmental degradation and destabilization of hills due to developmental projects, including cutting of hills for widening of roads, construction of four lanes, hydropower projects etc. 

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Kinnaur: Massive Landslide Caught on Camera, Kills 9 Tourists, Injures 4, Destroys Bailey Bridge

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kinnaur landslide in batseri

Kinnaur: A massive landslide in Batseri on Sangla-Chitkul road in the Kinnaur district of Himachal Pradesh on Sunday killed nine persons and injured at least four others. Huge boulders rolled down the mountain following the landslide and destroyed an iron Bailey bridge and many vehicles parked along the road within a few seconds.

A tourist vehicle, which was reportedly carrying about 11 tourists from Delhi NCR, Rajasthan, Maharashtra, and Chattisgarh, was hit by boulders near Gunsa, killing nine tourists. A couple of videos of this heart-wrenching incident went viral on social media. In the video, some people can be heard whistling and shouting to warn others.

“Nine people died, and three were injured after boulders rolled downhill due to a landslide in Kinnaur district. Batseri bridge collapsed in the incident. A rescue team is present at the spot,” Superintendent of Police (SP), Kinnaur, Saju Ram Rana said.

The intensity with which boulders hit could be assessed from the fact that the iron bailey bridge on the Baspa river collapsed instantly. 

Video of landlside in himachal pradesh

On receiving the information, teams of district police and Indo-Tibetan Border Police rushed to the spot and initiated a rescue operation. The district administration was also assessing the situation. As per reports, rocks sliding down from the hilltop made the rescue operation difficult for the teams.

sangla valley landslide

As per initial reports, a request was made to make a helicopter available to aid rescue work, which was yet to be fulfilled.

landslide in himachal pradesh

Chief Minister Jairam Thakur also expressed grief over the incident. An ex-gratia of Rs 2 lakh was announced for the deceased while injured would be given Rs. 50 thousand.

The exact cause behind the landslide was yet to be ascertained.

The deceased were identified as:

  1. Pratiksha Sunil Patil (27) from Sadhbhawna Nagar, Nagpur, Maharashtra
  2. Deepa Sharma (34) from Jaipur
  3. Amoghi Bapat (27) from Korba Darri in Chhatisgarh
  4. Umrab Singh (42) of Tagore Garden West Delhi
  5. Kumar Ulhas vedpathak (37)
  6. Anurag Biyani (31) from Sikar in Rajasthan, his mother Maya Devi Biyani (55) and his sister Richa Biyani (25)
  7. Satish Katakbar (34) from Chhatisgarh.

Those injured have been identified as Shiril Obroy (39) from West Delhi, Naveen Bhardwaj (37) from Kaharar in Mohali and Ranjeet Singh (45) from Batseri in Sangla.

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Himachal Reports Rise in Covid Deaths, No Vaccine for 18-44 Age Group Till July 22

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vaccination of youth in himachal pradesh

Shimla-Himachal Pradesh has reported a rise in daily casualties during the last three days. While 437 new cases were detected, 10 persons succumbed to the infection. in the last three days. According to the HP Health Department, state’s positivity rate for the last week – from July 5-July 11- was 1.0. Compared to a total of eight deaths in the entire week, Himachal has reported 10 deaths in the last three days of the ongoing week.

The State’s Covid death tally has now reached 3486. The number of active cases was 1150 on Thursday. The daily sampling remains between ten 10,000 to 15,000.

The state government has further discontinued vaccination for the 18-44 age group till 22 July. However, vaccination of other groups will continue. 

Himachal’s tourist spots continue to receive a large number of visitors daily. During the last month, after the HP government lifted all restrictions on inter-state movement, tourists had been over-crowding popular tourist destinations, especially Dharamshala, Shimla, and Manali, to such an extent that the Union Health Ministry, as well as, the Prime Minister had to warn states over the violation of guidelines regarding the “Covid-Appropriate Behavior”.

As both locals and tourists were observed to have become carefree and caring a little about social distancing or creating large gatherings, the state government on July 14 issued a fresh advisory to follow the “Covid-19 Appropriate Behavior” (CAB) to mitigate the third wave.

However, a widespread lack of awareness has been reported, due to which the public is not taking the warnings of the third wave and CAB guidelines seriously.  

In several instances, the state government found itself helpless in preventing large gatherings and violation of CAB guidelines. Over-crowded buses and carriage vehicles, for instance, is a common scene against the permitted capacity of 50%. The health experts had been insisting that successful implementation of SOPs at the mass level is not possible without the co-operation of the people. However, the current methods of the state government for creating awareness has failed to appeal to the majority of the people, which is making compliance of guidelines next to impossible. 

 

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