Tawang, April 22: A massive landslide triggered by incessant rains hit a labour camp in Tawang district of Arunachal Pradesh on Friday where atleast nine labourers were killed. The incident occurred at 3 a.m. when 17 labourers engaged in construction works were inside the camp at a place four km away from Tawang town, Additional Deputy Commissioner (Headquarters) Lod Gambo said. Police officer, Nabin Payeng, said the landslide swept through a labor camp at a construction site in Tawang. Rescuers found 16 bodies and were searching for two other workers feared buried in the debris. Three workers escaped from the camp at an altitude of more than 3,000 meters (7,500 feet), Payeng said.
“So far nine bodies have been extricated from the debris and search is on to locate the eight missing labourers,” Gambo said, adding incessant rain for the past couple of days had triggered landslides in several places of the border district. Gambo said rescue operation was on and two JCBs have been pressed into service to clear the debris. Prime Minister Narendra Modi has expressed grief over the loss of lives. In a message, the Prime Minister extended his condolences to the bereaved families
The PWD road in between New Lebrang and government higher secondary school has also been blocked due to landslide, while damages to residential buildings have been reported from the area. Heavy rainfall in the past few days in the district resulted in a flood-like situation which severely damaged the Kitpi Ph-I and Ph-II hydel projects. Rain continues to wreck havoc in Namsai and Changlang districts with reports of rising water of the Noa Dehing and the Jengthu rivers inundating fresh areas besides damaging several flood protection embankments, officials said.
Also, Home Minister Rajnath Singh today reviewed the flood situation in Arunachal Pradesh, which has been hit by a massive landslide that left 16 people dead. Singh called up Chief Minister Kalikho Pul and took stock of the situation in the state following the landslide in border town Tawang and floods in Changlang and a few other districts. Singh has assured full central assistance to Arunachal Pradesh to tackle the floods situation arising due to a swollen Noa Dehing river.
The Home Minister has asked Director General of National Disaster Response Force O P Singh to rush rescue teams to landslide-hit Famla village in Tawang, bordering China, official sources said.
Also, Congress President Sonia Gandhi on Friday extending her condolences to families of the dead, called on her party MLAs to volunteer with relief. Sonia has also called the Pradesh Congress Committee members and volunteers to contribute to the relief work.
Power department officials said restoration work could not be started due to the continuous rain and both the power stations had been shut down due to the damage. Taking serious note of the situation, DC Duly Kamduk has directed the department concerned for assessment and submission of detailed report for action.
Also, heavy erosion continued at Silatoo Khampti, New Silatoo, Kakoni, Silatoo Kachari, Mahadevpur-I, Waisali, Krishnapur, Mahaloni, Ekorani, Rajabeel, Dirakmiri, Lekang Gohain, Dharampur, Murti Camp, Kherbari, Deobeel, Philobari and Nampong villages.