60% work on landslide mapping over: GSI Director-General

June 08, 2018 01:01 am | Updated 01:01 am IST - Kolkata

Geological Survey of India [GSI] has completed 60% of its flagship landslide mapping programme. The officials said in Kolkata on Thursday that they will complete the project in another two years time. The project, once completed, offer seamless landslide susceptibility maps of all the potentially-affected areas which would help the district level administration.

“We have already completed 60% of landslide mapping in the country,” said the newly appointed Director General of GSI, Dinesh Kumar.

The officials said that the maps are interactive and have been set up using the Geographic Information System [GIS] platform. So far about 1.71 lakh square kilometre of land has been mapped. Nearly one-third of the area mapped has been uploaded for public use.

Currently, it aims to finish mapping of the inhabited areas in the initials stages followed by the inaccessible ones.

Since 2000, there have been thousands of reported deaths due to landslides; the most disastrous being those of 2013 in Uttarakhand where 5,700 people had died, and numerous others went missing.

By 2020, the GSI not only plans to map out the landslide-prone hilly terrains of 18 States, but also wishes to enter a partnership with the British Geological Survey (BGS) and Natural Resources, Canada (NRCAN) to develop an early warning system for landslides. If these are achieved, the GSI will have a tremendous impact on approximately 6 crore people living in such dangerous areas, an official release of GSI noted.

Mr. Kumar also echoed support for the Central government’s scheme to reduce transparency in the mining sector, by shedding light on the concept of e-auction of mining leases. The license-cum-mining leases would be awarded by the respective State governments to companies engaging in competitive bidding. But this revision in lease acquisition also means that the government would receive an increased share from the mining sector.

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