Manipur landslide toll rises to 46, search continues for 17 still missing
Imphal, July 4, 2022
With four more bodies recovered on Monday, the death toll in Thursday's landslide at a railway construction site in Manipur's Noney district increased to 46, including 30 Territorial Army soldiers, while search operations are underway in inclement weather to locate 17 others still missing, officials said.
The four bodies included those of three Territorial Army personnel and another person who was unidentified as the body was mutilated.
The 46 dead also include railway workers.
Despite fresh landslides on Sunday and continuous hostile weather conditions, the intensive search operations by the Indian Army, the Assam Rifles, the Territorial Army, and the National and State Disaster Response Forces continued at the incident site at Tupul, district officials said.
Senior Army and disaster management officials are camping at the site, supervising the rescue and recovery operations in the landslide-devastated mountainous Tupul, where scores, including Territorial Army personnel, were buried alive after the catastrophic mudslide that occurred on June 30.
The "Through Wall Radar" and search and rescue dogs were inducted to hasten the search operation, officials said. Relentless efforts to search for the remaining missing Territorial Army personnel and civilians would continue till the last individual is found, a defence spokesman said.
The district administration again on Monday cautioned civilians living in downstream areas of the Ijei river to evacuate due to the likelihood of breach in the dam created on the river by the landslide.
The Territorial Army soldiers were deployed at Tupul to provide security to the railway project in which many workers from Assam have been working.
The construction of the railway infrastructure in Noney district are part of the Rs 14,320 crore broad gauge Jiribam-Imphal railway project, being executed by the Northeast Frontier Railway (NFR), to connect the Manipur capital on the rail network by 2024.
After completion of the vital project, Imphal would be the fourth capital city in the northeastern region to come on the railway map after Assam's main city of Guwahati (adjoining capital Dispur), Agartala, and Naharlagun (adjacent to Arunachal's capital city Itanagar).