By Our Staff Reporter
Dehradun, 16 Jan: Secretary, Disaster Management, Dr Ranjit Kumar Sinha briefed the media today on the relief and rescue works being carried out in Joshimath in the wake of land subsidence there.
He stated that an amount of Rs 2.85 crores had been distributed to 190 affected families as advance against their displacement by the state government, so far. He again made it clear that this is only interim relief not the final compensation.
Sinha added that there is some news of relief from Joshimath. The initial discharge of water in certain colonies of Joshimath, which was 540 litres per minute (LPM) on 6 January, had now reduced significantly to 163 LPM. He also disclosed that crack meters had also been installed on the affected buildings by CBRI at the Government of India level to assess the damage. So far, damage assessment of 400 houses has been done. Besides this, 3 seismic stations have also been installed by the Wadia Institute, from which data is also being obtained. This is besides the hydrological survey being carried out by the National Geophysical Research Institute (NGRI), Hyderabad, Central Building Research Institute (CBRI), Roorkee, and IIT Roorkee. Other central institutes like Wadia Institute of Himalayan Geology, Geological Survey of India (GSI) and Indian Institute of Remote Sensing (IIRS) are also working in Joshimath.
Sinha said that additional capacity is being continuously added in the temporarily identified relief camps. Presently, there are a total of 615 rooms in Joshimath with a capacity to host 2190 persons, and 491 rooms in Pipalkoti with a capacity to host 2205 persons. Under the relief amount distributed to the affected at the rate of Rs 5000 per family, a total of Rs 3.65 lakhs has been distributed to 73 affected families to enable them to procure items of domestic consumption. In addition, an amount of Rs 13 lakh has been distributed to 10 affected people for completely damaged buildings as interim relief. People are applying for house rent as well. They would be paid at the rate of Rs 4,000 per month for a period of 6 months.
The Secretary, Disaster Management, further stated that, so far, cracks have been noticed in 849 buildings in Joshimath, but the survey is still in progress. He added that 1 ward has been declared unsafe in Gandhinagar, 2 wards in Singhdhar, 5 wards in Manoharbagh, and 7 wards in Sunil. A total of 165 buildings are located in unsafe areas, while 237 families have been temporarily displaced for their safety. The number of displaced family members is 800.
The Additional Secretary, Disaster Management, Director, Uttarakhand Landslide Management and Mitigation Institute, Officer-in-Charge, PIB, Director, Wadia Institute, Director, IIRS, Director, NIH, and Director, IITR, were also present at the press conference.