Due to heavy rainfall in Maharashtra, a devastating landslide struck Irsalvadi village in Khalapur, leading to the potential entrapment of approximately 50 families during the intervening night between Wednesday and Thursday. The calamitous incident has triggered rescue operations and has been met with swift government response.
As per media reports, some individuals have been successfully rescued, but the perilous conditions have hindered further efforts to extricate those still trapped. State ministers Dada Bhuse and Uday Samant promptly arrived at the scene to oversee rescue operations, while the National Disaster Response Force (NDRF) was deployed to aid in the relief efforts.
Unfortunately, it is feared that some individuals might have lost their lives in the landslide, while others managed to escape unscathed. The incessant rainfall has complicated the rescue operation, causing delays and challenges for the responders.
Yogesh Mhase, the collector of Raigad district, stated that reaching the affected location requires a two-hour climb, which poses a significant challenge for the rescue teams. The landslide severely impacted the people living near the Morbe Dam in Raigad district.
According to Uday Samant, around 46-50 houses are situated in Irsalvadi, out of which 25 people have been successfully evacuated amidst the continuous downpour. Maharashtra’s Chief Minister, Eknath Shinde, has been closely monitoring the situation.
Mahendra Kalyankar, the Divisional Commissioner, held a video conference with all officers during midnight and also received a call from CM Shinde to coordinate the rescue efforts effectively.
As information emerges from the site, it has been reported that four individuals, out of the estimated 60 trapped, have tragically lost their lives. Additionally, a considerable number of cattle are also believed to be buried under the debris. The chief minister has arrived at Irsalgarh to assess the situation firsthand.
Two NDRF teams, comprising 25 members each, are actively present at the landslide site, and four ambulances are on standby at the Rural Health Unit in Chauk, accompanied by the Taluka Health Officer and four doctors.
Rohit Chandrakant Pawar, the vice chief of the Vanchit Bahujan Aghadi party in Khalapur, was among the first responders to reach the location after midnight. He stated that they have managed to rescue three people and are working tirelessly to bring them down to safety.
In response to the severe weather conditions, the India Meteorological Department (IMD) issued a ‘red’ alert for Raigad and Palghar districts, warning of the likelihood of heavy to extremely heavy rainfall in various parts on Wednesday. An ‘orange’ alert was also issued for Thane, Ratnagiri, and Pune.
Taking precautions, the Raigad administration declared a holiday for all schools and colleges, as the district remained on ‘orange’ alert until July 21. Additionally, NDRF teams were deployed in Palghar and Raigarh (Mahad) on Wednesday.
Adding to the crisis, the Patalganga river in Khalapur area near Karjat has surged beyond the danger mark due to the continuous heavy rains. In Raigad’s Lohap Mouje village, the river recorded a water level of 21.52 meters, causing a flood-like situation in Apta area.
Authorities and rescue teams continue to work tirelessly to reach the trapped families and provide the necessary assistance during this devastating natural disaster.