TODAY -

Right recipe for more natural disasters
- The People's Chronicle Editorial :: July 02, 2022 -



Till the calamitous landslide that occurred near Makhuam village in Noney district, which has so far claimed the lives of over 12 people, left scores injured and many others still unaccounted for, there were notions that the global phenomenon of drastic climate change is yet to have any serious impact in the state, where 90 per cent are hills, including vast tract of the hill ranges left denuded due to unrestrained deforestation.

Prior to the Makhuam landslide, Manipur witnessed another massive landslip in Tamenglong district some four years back that claimed nine lives, including toddlers and youth in their prime, which not only left all sections of the society in shock but many were compelled to apprehend that recurrences of such calamitous natural disasters is quite possible.

In fact, natural calamities, floods and landslides in particular, have been regular features in the state since the last few years thereby ringing out the message that serious damage has been done to Mother Nature and there are no safe zones in the state.

Though search and rescue operations are underway with the active involvement of various agencies and villagers after the massive landslide swept away everything on its path, only the ultra-optimists would believe that the missing people would be found alive.

Unlike in earthquake disaster situations where there have been reports of survivors living to recount extra-ordinary circumstances and resilience of defying death even after days of being trapped under rubbles, it is very rare to hear about similar tales in case of landslides of such magnitude like the one that occurred near the railway project site in Noney district.

Nevertheless, it is hoped that the rescue workers would give their all to reunite the missing people with their loved ones as well as locate the bodies for giving them a decent farewell in honour of their service rendered to the nation in general and Manipur in particular.

The rescue workers might be extremely exhausted working in such a hostile condition but it is obvious that they feel great relief when someone could be pulled out from the jaws of death.

As reported widely, the under-construction Tupul station building, track formation and camps of construction workers as well as security personnel were all washed down the Ijei river and buried under huge debris.

In Manipur's context, a handful of benevolent environmentalists had been using the terminology 'anthropogenic' factor as and when natural disasters that grab the attention of national media hit the state rather than categorically stating that it is clearly human greed which is causing the landslides.

The regular occurrences of landslides in the state make it crystal clear that preventing natural disasters is neither within the common man's grasp nor could the government institutions come up with policy effective enough to counter fury of Mother Nature.

However, it is desired that government authorities consult with subject experts to at-least minimise the damages and prevent loss of lives and properties without which it could be safely stated that there will be no respite from nature's wrath.

It is equally important that the public retrospect on their environmentally unfriendly activities rather than putting the blame on the government whenever disasters strike.



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