The death toll due to landslides in Arunachal Pradesh increased to eight after the body of a woman who went missing was recovered here on Friday, police said. The body of 35-year-old Kusum Rai was retrieved from the debris in the backside of Punjabi Dhaba in the city after six days of an extensive search operation, Capital Superintendent of Police (SP) Jimmy Chiram said. The bodies of Nagen Barman (50) and Tapas Rai (15) were recovered from the spot and the woman was feared dead after their house was hit by a landslide on Sunday night.
“The search operation conducted by the National Disaster Response Force, state officials and the police was hampered due to incessant rainfall,” Chiram said.
Two Public Works Department labourers were also buried in a landslide at Ganga-Jully Basti Road on Monday while trying to extricate a motorcycle stuck in the mud.
Three people also lost their lives due to landslides in Kurung Kumey district while another is still missing, sources at the State Disaster Management Authority (SDMA) said. Most parts of the state have been witnessing heavy rainfall over the last few days, with landslides being reported from several districts, they said.
Around 3,000 people in 33 villages of 14 districts have been affected till Wednesday by heavy rain that triggered landslides and flood-like situations. At least 7.6 hectares of cultivated fields have been destroyed, while 392 houses were damaged across the state, the sources said.
During a meeting on monsoon preparedness, Chief Minister Pema Khandu had on Thursday stressed on the need for putting in a robust advance warning system to avert the loss of lives due to disasters. He insisted that the State Emergency Operation Center should be active round the clock during the monsoon season.