NEW DELHI: Hopes to find survivors from a landslide fade as bed weather slows down the rescue operation.
An entire village got buried as a result of a land slide on Wednesday. Malin village near Pune in Maharashtra was buried under tons of earth as the landslide hit the village early in the day while the villagers were sleeping. Eight people were rescued in the first few hours, however no survivors have been found in the past 40 hours.
According to details, a large part of a hill collapsed on Malin village and hopes of finding any more survivors from the landslide are very dim. Until now the number of bodies found is more than 50, officials have confirmed. However, bad weather is hindering the rescue workers who are digging through the mud.
At least 150 to 200 tribal people were buried under tonnes of loose earth, mud and rocks. Alok Avasthy, regional commandant of the National Disaster Response Force (NDRF) said: “Miracles do happen we will keep looking, but under current conditions it is very, very bleak.” By now rescue workers had reached the main inhabited area and were continuing digging. A total of 51 bodies – 22 women, 23 men and six children – had been recovered so far.
At the meantime, wailing relatives, mourning the loss of entire families, were at the scene, hoping and praying for some positive news. Survivors could be seen searching through the wreckage, trying to pick up their possessions. The eight survivors are being treated in the local government hospital in Manchar town, some 60km from Malin.
A survivor 25-year-old Pramila Lembe and her three-month-old baby, who were rescued eight hours after the landslide Ms Lembe had woken up to breast-feed the baby when the landslide happened. “I heard a loud thunder-like noise. I tried to run but the wall collapsed. I kept calling out for help while protecting my baby boy in my lap. Finally, rescue workers heard me and they pulled me out.
The officials confirmed that the disaster in Malin was reported when a bus passed by and the driver saw that the village had disappeared under masses of mud and earth. Subsequently, the rescue operations were interrupted many times on Wednesday and Thursday by very heavy rainfall in the area.