While hundreds took to Twitter and other social platforms to voice their suspicions that human interference caused the deadly landslide at Malin on Wednesday, the Geological Survey of India (GSI) ruled out the possibility in its primary report. It stated that heavy rainfall through the week leading up to the landslide was responsible for the disaster.
The Director General of GSI, Harbans Singh disclosed on Sunday, that a team visited the village soon after the incident, to conduct the primary investigation. “We can conclude that heavy rainfall, in the week before the landslide, in the village and its surrounding areas, had reduced the density of soil on the slope,” said Singh. He added that the constant rainfall had increased the water pressure on the rocks, reducing the integrity of the slope until it gave way.
GSI officials also went on to warn that the ground in the village is still compromised, with loose saturated soil and debris lying on the edges of the landslide site. “If the rainfall continues for another three to four days, there is the possibility of further sliding in a portion adjacent to the first site,” Singh said.
Wednesday’s landslide at the village in Ambegaon tehsil has claimed as many as 106 lives (as of yesterday) while many are still feared trapped in the debris. The incessant rain, which has hampered rescue efforts, has also presented challenges to the GSI team.
“As soon as the rain stops, our team will visit the site once again for further investigation. The detailed report of the incident will be submitted to the state government on September 20,” Singh said.
Lives claimed by the Malin landslide so far