Raigad landslide | Death toll rises to 25; 83 persons yet to be traced

In the wake of the landslide incident, the Maharashtra Government has decided to shift residents of all landslide-prone areas in the State to safer locations

Updated - July 22, 2023 01:22 pm IST

Published - July 22, 2023 10:00 am IST - Mumbai

In this handout photograph released by India’s National Disaster Response Force (NDRF) and taken on July 22, 2023, NDRF personnel search for victims at the site of a landslide at Irshalwadi village of Raigad district in Maharashtra.

In this handout photograph released by India’s National Disaster Response Force (NDRF) and taken on July 22, 2023, NDRF personnel search for victims at the site of a landslide at Irshalwadi village of Raigad district in Maharashtra. | Photo Credit: AFP

 Search and rescue teams on Saturday recovered three bodies from the debris at the landslide-affected Irshalwadi village in Maharashtra’s Raigad district, taking the death toll in the tragedy to 25, an official said.

“Bodies of two women and a man were recovered from the landslide site in Irshalwadi on Saturday,” an official of the National Disaster Response Force (NDRF) said.

With this, the death toll in the landslide tragedy has gone up to 25, he said, adding that the search and rescue work is still underway as 83 persons are yet to be traced.

Here are the updates from Raigad landslide on July 20.

The deceased women were identified as 32-year-old Mahi Madhu Tirkat, Aashi Pandurang (around 50 years). The male deceased was identified as Kishan Tirkat, 27, officials said.

The death toll till Thursday evening was 16, which went up to 22 on Friday as six more bodies were recovered. The deceased included nine men, as many women and four children. Nine members of a family perished in the disaster, officials have said.

"The search and rescue operation by the National Disaster Response Force (NDRF) and other government agencies resumed for the third day on Saturday morning," a police official said.

The search operation was suspended around 6 pm on Friday due to heavy rains, an NDRF official said.

"Four NDRF teams and other agencies resumed the operation this morning," he said.

At least 17 of 48 houses in the village, located on a hill slope, were fully or partially buried under the landslide debris.

As per the Raigad district disaster management office, of 229 village residents, 22 were dead, 10 were injured, 111 were safe and 86 persons were yet to be traced.

Some of them, however, had left the village to attend a marriage while some were out for rice plantation work at the time of the incident.

Of the six victims whose bodies were pulled out on Friday, three were men and three women. Four children, aged between six months to four years, are among the deceased, officials said.

A three-year-old boy and his six-month-old sister are among the nine members of one family who died in the incident, they said.

Three livestock animals also died in the incident, while 21 animals were rescued.

From the hill base, it takes around one-and-a-half hours to reach Irshalwadi.

As the village, overlooked by Irshalgad fort, a popular trekking destination, does not have a pucca road, earth movers and excavators could not be easily moved and the rescue operation is being carried out manually, officials said.

As many as 60 containers have been requisitioned to be used as transit camps for the survivors and 40 of them have already reached the location, a release issued on Friday by the office of the Deputy Director of Publicity, Konkan division, said.

In addition, 20 temporary toilets and an equal number of bathrooms have been prepared at the site, it said.

In the wake of the landslide incident, the Maharashtra Government has decided to shift residents of all landslide-prone areas in the State to safer locations, Chief Minister Eknath Shinde told the State Legislative Assembly on Friday.

Irshalwadi hamlet was not on the list of landslide-prone areas, he said.

On July 22, 2021, a massive landslide at Taliye village in Mahad tehsil of Raigad district had claimed 87 lives.

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