South Asia

Nepal Army unblocks river dammed by landslide

Nepalese soldiers successfully unblocked a river dammed by a landslide that was threatening hundreds of villages downstream, authorities said on Saturday.

The landslide buried a village, killing 156 people, and dammed up the Sunkoshi River in the central district of Sindupalchowk on August 2.

The growing reservoir behind the mud dam posed a safety risk downstream as far as northern India if it burst the banks, officials said.

“Nepal Army personnel digging a canal in the natural dam for the last 25 days made a path for the blocked river to flow out,” chief district officer Gopal Parajuli said.

Immediately after the disaster occurred, the Army had tried to use explosives to break up the mud dam but failed to make a major impact.

“People who had left homes in fear of the bursting of the lake have started to return home after the river started flowing in its natural course since last night,” Mr. Parajuli said.

“The water flow is normal, so it is unlikely that this will cause damage downstream.”

He said the water level behind the mud dam had already gone down by more than 14 metres.

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Printable version | May 7, 2021 8:54:11 AM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/international/south-asia/nepal-army-unblocks-sunkoshi-river-dammed-by-landslide/article6388064.ece

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