Rainfall triggers bridge collapse, landslides across state
Climate Change and Deforestation are main causes for natural calamities, people should plant more trees: Minister Govindas

Source: Chronicle News Service

Imphal/Noney, May 12 2022: The Bailey bridge over Irang river along the Imphal-Jiribam (NH-37) road collapsed Thursday at about 2pm as the strong current of the increasing water level of the river due to incessant rain since the past few days washed away basement of the bridge.

There are also reports of landslides occurring at many parts of the state.

Collapse of the bridge has left several vehicles stranded on both ends of the highway but light vehicles and empty trucks have been diverted towards Rengpang-Khoupum-Bishnupur road.

Loaded trucks coming from Jiribam towards Imphal are still stranded at Taubam village (Irang) .

The iron bridge was constructed around 17 months back by 22 Engineer Regiment of Indian Army but basement of the bridge suffered extensive damage since the past few days as strong current of Irang river washed it away.

After the earlier iron bridge over the river was not pliable twice in November, 2020, the present Bailey bridge was re-constructed within 20 days and chief minister N Biren inaugurated it on December 1, 2020 .

In the aftermath of collapse of Irang bridge, Noney DC Haulianlal Guite issued an order prohibiting movement of vehicles along Khongshang to Noney stretch of NH-37 road with immediate effect.

Though he suggested alternative route via Khoupum to Rengpang for emergency vehicles, Haulianlal advised heavy vehicles against plying on the road due to rugged and narrow terrain.

He also instructed Noney police to take up precautionary measures and check all vehicles.

Our correspondents informed that normal life in Noney and Tamenglong districts has been badly affected due to incessant rain since the past few days.

All the major rivers in the two districts like Barak, Makru, Irang, Ijei, Iril and Leimatak are flowing at danger mark while landslides and mudslides have occurred at many places of the two districts.

In Noney district, the temporary bamboo foot bridge over Ijei river that connects Karuangmuan, Nungtek and Longmai bazar was washed away by strong current of the river at about 9.30am on Thursday while one granary slipped down in the mudslides at Kabui Khullen Part-1 .

In Tamenglong district, many houses have been submerged due to overflowing of Apa river at Lower Sonpram.

Landslides damaged some portion of Jadonang Park at Gadailong while the hanging bridge at Namtiram village over Barak River that connects Tousem and Tamenglong district headquarters too has been damaged.

Electric lines have been cut off and internet services disrupted.

Speaking to media persons, Nungtek village chairman G Khumba informed that the villagers are suffering untold miseries and inconveniences due to the natural calamities and urged government to construct a permanent RCC bridge over Izei river.

More inconveniences are also caused to the commuters by the new cutting of land for the expansion of NH-37 and Tamenglong-Khongshang road into double lane.

Trees have been uprooted and many horticulture farms submerged by floods in low lying areas.

Meanwhile, works minister Govindas Konthoujam said that he has contacted officials of NHIDCL regarding collapse of Irang bridge but the latter are clueless on taking up immediate work as water level of Irang river continues to rise.

As usual, light vehicles will ply along Khoupum Rangpang (Old Cachar road) but it will be risky for plying heavy trucks along the road as it was constructed only for light vehicles.

Deeply concerned over numerous landslides and mudslides occurred in hill areas of the state in a spell of heavy rain, Govindas said climate change and deforestation are main cause for these phenom enon and appealed people to plant more trees.

Meanwhile, owing to occurrence of mudslide near Lamlenkon village under T Vaichong Sub Divisional Headquarters, Twilang area has been cut off completely from the rest of the world since Wednesday.

It is the seventh time that mud slide occurred at the place since August last year.

Representatives of Joint Monitoring Development Committee of IT Road rushed to site with an excavator (JCB) but road clearance work cannot be carried out due continuous rainfall.

The shortcut road from Thonglang Atongba to T Vaichong via Lamchok has been temporarily closed owing to alarming rise in water level of Irang River.

Committee chairman Lutngam Manlun contended that due to failure of state government and authorities concerned to initiate measures for a permanent solution mudslides Occur repeatedly.

He then appealed to all concerned to at least consider the people's distress and initiate measures for a permanent solution.

Meanwhile, there are also reports of landslides occurring at Bajagara village, partially damaging one residential house and along the road leading to Tousem PHC on Thursday around 9.30 am completely blocking the road and damaging several houses in the area in addition to injuries suffered by a person.

The incessant rainfall also caused a mudslide at Leimakhong P Muolding village around 2.30 pm but there is no report of any damage caused.

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