TML/IMP, Jul 11: At least nine people including five siblings have been killed as massive landslides hit Tamenglong town early this morning.
In the first incident, five siblings aged between 19 and 6 were swept away by landslide that tore away their bed room situated on the ground floor of a two storeyed building.
The children hailing from Sonram, a village situated 20 Kms North of Tamenglong police station were staying in their aunt’s house in New Salem, Tamenglong Ward no 4 when the calamity hit them. They were studying in different schools of Tamenglong town.
Another landslide occurred in Neigailong, Tamenglong Ward no 2 and it killed a mother and her son.
In yet another bizarre incident, a mudslide rushing down from the hill sides swept away a house in Ramgailong, Tamenglong Ward no 3. The mudslide carried away two siblings, aged 9 months and 3 years. They are still traceless till the time of filing this report.
Tamenglong Deputy Commissioner Ravinder Singh, speaking to this correspondent, said that search operation is going on to recover the two siblings from amongst the debris and further downstream.
Altogether seven bodies have been recovered while two others could not be traced till the time of filing this report.
Seven of the victims have been identified as Miss Tigailiu Riamei (17), Miss Peichunliu Riamei (15), Gaikumei Riamei (13), Guangthuichui Riamei (12), Pouhuatlung Riamei (9), Maijinlakliu (33) and her son Linwangbou (13).
While the first five were sons and daughters of Keithuannang Riamei of Sonram village, the 5th and the 6th were daughter and son of Maithuanlung Pamei of Maruangpa (Luangdi) village.
The two siblings swept away by mudslide have been identified as Rajianguangpou (9 months) and Meihuanliu (3 years). Their parents Lanthailung Kamei (40) and Khuangamliu (38) are undergoing treatment at Tamenglong district hospital and they are said to be out of danger.
Stupefied and shocked by the tragedy, all the shops and establishments remained closed and people from all walks of life remained busy visiting the bereaved families.
A team of the State Government comprising of Ministers Karam Shyam, Th Radheshyam and Adim Pamei, Vice Chairman, State Disaster Management visited Tamenglong town today and consoled the bereaved families with financial helps and promises for rehabilitation.
Meanwhile Chief Minister N Biren Singh has expressed deep shock and grief over the death of nine persons including five children and leaving many injured in massive landslides that occurred in Tamenglong district today morning.
In a condolence message, the Chief Minister conveyed his sympathy to the bereaved families and prayed for eternal peace of the departed souls. The Chief Minister wished speedy recovery to those who were injured in the tragic incident.
Expressing deep pain over the incident, N Biren assured that an ex-gratia of Rs 5 lakh would be given to the next of kin of the deceased persons. He also instructed the Deputy Commissioner of Tamenglong district to provide immediate assistance to the victims and to monitor the situation minutely.
Meanwhile the district administration of Tamenglong has opened a Relief Control Room to respond to grievances from the residents of the area. Manipur police along with Assam Rifles and paramilitary forces helped in evacuating people of the landslide affected areas to safe locations.
Information received from the Environment, Climate Cell said that the massive landslides were triggered by heavy rainfall.
Heavy rainfall which reached the scale of 158.8 mm lashed Tamenglong district headquarters since last midnight till 5 am today.
The rainfall was so heavy that it recorded 44.2 litres of water over a square metre between 2 am and 3 am.
The Directorate of Environment said that the tragic landslides were connected with climate change.