Karnataka

Post-2019 disaster, Malnad better prepared for landslips

Vast tracts of agriculture fields and many residential localities in Sagar taluk were inundated on July 23, 2021 following heavy overnight rains.  

The memory of heavy rains and landslides in Malnad districts – particularly Chikkamagaluru and Hassan – in August 2019 has resulted in the government machinery being prepared to face the possible repeat of such a situation.

 

Senior officers held a series of meetings to constitute village-level committees and arrange necessary materials to handle the situation.

August 2019: A landslide near Jayapura on the Sringeri-Chikkamagaluru road following heavy rains.

August 2019: A landslide near Jayapura on the Sringeri-Chikkamagaluru road following heavy rains.  

Chikkamagaluru Deputy Commissioner K.N. Ramesh, on August 1, held a videoconference with taluk level officers on preparedness. The administration has identified vulnerable places and officers had been designated to each place. Care centres have been identified across the district to shelter affected persons.

GP committees

The district administration has identified 47 gram panchayats, vulnerable to floods, and constituted a disaster management committee in each panchayat. Each panchayat has early warning teams, evacuation and rescue teams, and damage assessment teams. The members of the committee had undergone training in Mysuru on relief works. A few committees had already completed familiarisation exercises with the State Disaster Response Force (SDRF).

August 2019: A jeep fell around 200 metres off the road at Haravinakere near Kottigehara in Mudigere taluk following a landslip. Several people were shifted to temporary shelters following damage to their houses.

August 2019: A jeep fell around 200 metres off the road at Haravinakere near Kottigehara in Mudigere taluk following a landslip. Several people were shifted to temporary shelters following damage to their houses.   | Photo Credit: PRAKASH HASSAN

SDRF teams have been stationed at Balehonnur in N.R. Pura taluk and in Kalasa. Chikkamagaluru Superintendent of Police Akshay M. Hakay has appealed to the public to call up the police helpline 112 in case of any emergency.

Swimmers on call

The officers have identified 70 expert swimmers and their names would be displayed prominently in villages so that people can contact them in case of an emergency. Similarly, a list of people who own earthmovers has been prepared.

August 2019: A jeep fell around 200 metres off the road at Haravinakere near Kottigehara in Mudigere taluk following a landslip. Several people were shifted to temporary shelters following damage to their houses.

August 2019: A jeep fell around 200 metres off the road at Haravinakere near Kottigehara in Mudigere taluk following a landslip. Several people were shifted to temporary shelters following damage to their houses.   | Photo Credit: PRAKASH HASSAN

The officers have identified 64 vehicles for emergency use in the district. At a meeting held recently, Hassan DC R. Girish told officers to keep the men and machinery ready. During the heavy rains last week, six houses in Sakleshpur were damaged and several localities were flooded. The then ministers R. Ashok and K. Goplaiah had visited the rain-hit areas.

2019 devastation

August 2019: A jeep fell around 200 metres off the road at Haravinakere near Kottigehara in Mudigere taluk following a landslip. Several people were shifted to temporary shelters following damage to their houses.

August 2019: A jeep fell around 200 metres off the road at Haravinakere near Kottigehara in Mudigere taluk following a landslip. Several people were shifted to temporary shelters following damage to their houses.   | Photo Credit: PRAKASH HASSAN

The heavy rainfall that lashed the Malnad region in August 2019 is unforgettable because of the magnitude of the damage it caused. Hundreds of families were rendered homeless. Scores of people were stuck in their homes surrounded by water. The emergency response teams reached the spot only after the water level came down and took people to safer places. The affected people were put up in temporary shelters for several months.

Agriculture was severely affected as landslides damaged plantations. People who lost their homes received financial assistance from the Karnataka government to build houses in safe places. The rehabilitation plan proposed for those who lost their plantations attracted criticism.

Taken by surprise

August 2019: People and schoolchildren of Balegadde in N.R. Pura taluk cross Bhadra river on a coracle following the collapse of a bridge during heavy rains.

August 2019: People and schoolchildren of Balegadde in N.R. Pura taluk cross Bhadra river on a coracle following the collapse of a bridge during heavy rains.  

All that damage was caused due to heavy rains in a short span of time. Interestingly, until the end of July 2019, the rainfall in the southwest monsoon was normal. As of July 31, 2019, the rainfall recorded in the Malnad region was 25% less than the normal expected in the month. However, by the end of August 2019, the region had received 121% excess rainfall. This year, as of August 2, the region received 13% less than the normal rainfall during the southwest monsoon.

AUGUST 2019: Over 2.5 lakh cusecs of water was released from Tungabhadra reservoir at Munirabad in Koppal district on August 11 as the water level got close to the brim on account of heavy inflow following a downpour in the catchment areas in the Western Ghats and Malnad region.

AUGUST 2019: Over 2.5 lakh cusecs of water was released from Tungabhadra reservoir at Munirabad in Koppal district on August 11 as the water level got close to the brim on account of heavy inflow following a downpour in the catchment areas in the Western Ghats and Malnad region.  

 


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Printable version | Sep 18, 2021 4:46:18 AM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/karnataka/post-2019-disaster-malnad-better-prepared-for-landslips/article35694276.ece

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