Multiple landslides leave Pyuthan’s Damri at high riskAround 70 households are at risk and need immediate relocation, officials say.
Ker Bahadur Thapa of Damri has been restless after a massive landslide erupted just below his house in Naubahini Rural Municipality-5, Pyuthan, on Wednesday. His house has developed cracks and can collapse any moment now. All five members of his family are taking shelter in an animal shed nearby.
“It rains almost every day. The threat of landslides is very high. We are terrified that our house will be swept away,” said Thapa. According to him, the landslide swept away around 20 ropanis of his land. “We cannot return home due to fear of landslides and my land is gone. Where should I go now?”
Besides Thapa’s house, around 70 other houses of six settlements in the Damri area are at risk of landslides.
Daljita Gharti, a resident of Damri, left her house after a landslide erupted in the area on Wednesday. Her family is taking shelter at a relative’s house in the neighbouring settlement.
“We are taking refuge at a relative’s house. We don’t know when the landslides will sweep our house away,” said Gharti. “We have land plots in Patlekhola and Pokhara. But these places are also at risk of landslides. The government should relocate us to safer locations.”
Man Bahadur Pun, another local resident, says all the residents of Damri have been affected by the landslides.
“There’s no safe location around our village. The school building is also at risk of landslides. And there’s no one to take help from,” Pun said, urging the government authorities to relocate the at-risk settlements to safer places.
Around half a dozen villages, including Thulodamri, Sanodamri and Basel, at Damri in Naubahini Rural Municipality Ward No. 5 are at risk of landslides. According to Pun, a dozen families have already fled their village fearing landslides.
The landslides have also disrupted electricity supply and drinking water pipelines in Damri.
Taj Bahadur Pun, a resident of Damri, says the villagers are without electricity and drinking water for the past few days.
“On top of the risk of being swept away, we have to live without electricity and drinking water. We are yet to receive help from the authorities. We have been left in a lurch,” he said.
Meanwhile, Ana Bahadur Ghartimagar, chairman of Ward No. 5 of Naubahini Rural Municipality, has underscored the need to relocate 70 households in Damri that are at risk of landslides.
“It would cause great destruction if the relocation process is delayed, as the Damri area has been witnessing continuous rainfall for several days,” Ghartimagar said.
According to him, the ward office has been collecting details of the destruction and information on the affected families.
“We have also requested the rural municipal office for the families’ relocation and distribution of relief,” said Ghartimagar.
The residents of Dumri have also been asked to stay on high alert, says Shivaraj Rijal, chairman of Naubahini Rural Municipality.
“The rural municipality is yet to receive the details of the destruction. We will conduct a field inspection soon,” he said.