27 dead, many missing as rain and landslides wreak havoc in Mizoram, Aizawl cut off from country

Aizawl, May 28 (IANS): At least 27 people were killed, including 21 in a stone quarry collapse, and 10 others missing in landslides in Mizoram's Aizawl district on Tuesday following incessant rain triggered by Cyclone Remal, officials said.

Disaster management and police officials said that 21 bodies had been recovered so far from the quarry site between Melthum and Hlimen in Aizawl while several others were still trapped under the debris following the collapse in the morning.

Six people were killed and several missing in other landslide incidents at Salem, Aibawk, Lungsei, Kelsih, and Falkawn in Aizawl district.

The heavy rain and landslides also badly affected transport and even left Aizawl cut off from the rest of the country.

At the quarry site, disaster management personnel, police and local people continued hectic efforts to rescue the trapped people or recover the bodies.

Heavy rain and intense winds were affecting the rescue operations, a disaster management official said, adding that seven of the victims are locals, while the remaining are from outside the state.

A minor boy and a minor girl were among the victims of the stone quarry collapse, while two persons were rescued alive.

Rain-triggered landslides were reported in several other districts, disrupting the movement of vehicles between the districts. Aizawl was cut off due to multiple landslides on National Highway 6, the lifeline of the mountainous state. Several buildings, houses, roads, and bridges were either damaged or swept away due to landslides and the heavy rain.

Chief Minister Lalduhoma held an emergency meeting with Home Minister K. Sapdanga, Chief Secretary Renu Sharma and other senior officials to review the situation. The government has also ordered all schools to be closed and government employees, except those involved in providing emergency and essential services, to work from home.

The Chief Minister and the Home Minister, accompanied by senior officials, also visited the stone quarry site. Lalduhoma announced a fund of Rs 15 crore to provide relief to the affected people and an ex gratia of Rs 4 lakh each to be given to the kin of those who died in the landslides.

President Droupadi Murmu and Home Minister Amit Shah expressed their grief over the deaths at the stone quarry accident.

"Saddened to learn about the loss of lives in a stone quarry collapse near Aizawl in Mizoram. My condolences to the bereaved families. I pray for the success of rescue and relief operations and wish for a speedy recovery of the injured", the President said in a post on X. "Deeply saddened to know about the tragic accident at a stone quarry in Mizoram. My sincerest condolences to the families of the deceased, and I pray for the speedy recovery of the injured," the Home Minister said on X.



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Title: 27 dead, many missing as rain and landslides wreak havoc in Mizoram, Aizawl cut off from country

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