Landslide kills 4; two missing
By Express News Service - KOTHAMANGALAM
18th August 2012 08:31 AM
Four people were killed and two went missing at Paingottoor near here following a landslide on Friday afternoon.
Seven houses were washed away while one person was rescued from the debris after the sudden rush of water at Kadavoor Fourth Block, 25 km from Kothamangalam town.
The deceased were identified as Vattakkunnel Ouseph, Kaduvakkuzhiyil Madhu, Irumpukanathil Leela and Thanikkuzhiyil Narayanan.
The first three bodies were recovered from the debris by the Fire Force officials with the help of local people.
Narayanan, 60, died following cardiac arrest on witnessing the landslide.
According to locals, the flow of water was so strong that the rescue activities were delayed by nearly an hour after the landslide.
Rajesh, 20, son of Kaduvakkuzhiyil Madhu, was rescued but his mother Nalini is missing along with Irumpukanathil Iype.
Kadavoor Fourth Block is situated between the border of Ernakulam and Idukki districts and most of its residents are farm workers.
The houses of Kizhakkayil Meeran, Punchakkod Benoy, Irumpukanathil Iype, Kaduvakkuzhiyil Madhu, Manikkunnel Gopalan and Njarambukanakkal Kunjoonj were washed away in the nature's fury. The houses were destroyed in the landslide which hit around 3.30 pm.
“The water from top of the hill along with large stones and mud gushed nearly one kilometer down with a loud noise and nearly one and half acres of land got destroyed within no time," an eyewitness told Express.
MLAs Joseph Vazhakkan, Roshy Augustine and Eranakulam District Collector Sheik Pareeth rushed to the area to lead the rescue operations.
Fire service units from Kothamangalam, Moovattupuzha, Koothattukulam, Thodupuzha and Kalloorkkad were engaged in the rescue operations braving heavy rains. The District Collector said that if required the assistance of Navy would be sought.
“People residing in the area have been advised to evacuate the place as there is a threat of another landslide. Shelter camps will be started in nearby schools,” he said.
Ministers K Babu and Anoop Jacob, P T Thomas MP and T U Kuruvilla MLA were also at the site to oversee the rescue operations.
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