Landslide, massive flood kills eight people in Nepal

A huge landslide and flood triggered by torrential rains in Nepal today killed at least eight persons, including three of a family while more than 3,000 people were displaced, prompting the deployment of the army for rescue and relief operations. The landslide hit the Bhaktapur district last night and swept away the home of the family while they were asleep.

The bodies of the victims were identified as that of a 70-year-old man, his 62-year-old wife and their granddaughter. The bodies have been pulled out of the debris, police said. Two persons were killed in Rupandehi, one each in Kapilvastu, Baglung and Jhapa districts, according to the official.

Parts of Bhaktapur Municipally have been submerged due to the flood on the Hanumante river following continuous downpour for the past three days. Dozens of houses were inundated due to the flood displacing hundreds of people.

Inspector Himal Shrestha, the spokesperson for the Bhaktapur Police, said 111 people were rescued from floods in the Radhe Radhe area and the nearby Khasangkhusung river. “Most of the people we rescued are earthquake victims staying in temporary shelters and vegetable farmers. Their place is unlivable,” said Shrestha, adding that they may be displaced for two more days.

Over 700 security personnel, more than five dozen Armed Police personnel and Nepal Army soldiers–and Red Cross members were deployed for the rescue operation. They used rafts and cranes to rescue the people, the Kathmandu Post reported.

Schools, hospitals, shops, and industries in the Radhe Radhe and Madhyapur Thimi areas remained closed throughout the day as the water level rose up to four feet above the ground. This is not the first time that the area has been inundated. In 2015, Hanumante River displaced 850 people from their temporary shelters at the Maheshwori playground. These victims had become homeless in the earthquake earlier that year.

Chief District Officer Narayan Prasad Bhatta said the inundation was caused by the swollen river. Geologists blamed encroachment of riverbanks and haphazard sand mining for the mayhem. In June, at least three persons of a family, including a girl, were killed in a huge landslide triggered by torrential rains.