SHILLONG, Jul 11: Due to incessant rain since the last week of June, the river Umngi has been in spate and repeated river erosion along the bank has caused damage to a number of habitations of schools.
The high velocity of water has eroded the soil embankment causing damage to property along the areas lying near the river bank at Balat village, Ranikor Community & Rural Development Block.
The Deputy Commissioner, South West Khasi District, Isawanda Laloo immediately instructed a team comprising of H S Diengdoh, ADC in-charge Ranikor, D L Kharkongor, District Disaster Management Officer, S Lyngdoh, JE Water Resources Department to conduct a joint inspection to the affected areas.
During the inspection it was found that one residential house and one church were affected.
Also one temple and one school were completely eroded ad one school partially affected.
Office of the Syiem Hima Maharam and an ICDS School also suffered minor damages.
About 1 Km along the stretch of the river Umngi till the Balat market was found to be very vulnerable.
According to the findings of the team the people residing nearby this area of the river bank are highly vulnerable since the soil along this area is not stable as it is covered mostly by loose soil.
The remedial measures suggested by the team were that anti-erosion protection work is mandatory. The chainage is approximately 2-4 kms along the vulnerable areas.
To prevent further aggravation of the erosion, the authority recommended matter of the Brahmaputra Board for quick implementation of the works before further calamities can arise.
Further, the Deputy Commissioner also informed that she has directed the Block Development Officer Ranikor Community &Rural Development Block may direct the VECs to take necessary precautionary works in case of any immediate danger.
The inspection team also directed the Executive Engineer Water Resources to take precautionary measures possible at his level to prevent further soil erosion of River Umngi.
Meanwhile five safe shelters was identified, three at Brahmaputra house and one each at ICDS and RCLP.
People residing along the vulnerable area were advised to be prepared in case of future rainfall and to evacuate immediately to the above-identified shelters.
The Sub-Divisional Officer (Civil), H S Diengdoh, L G M Kharmih, BDO, Ranikor Community & Rural Development Block visited the site today to monitor the situation and to take necessary precautionary measure immediately.
Meanwhile, the SDO (Civil) informed that he has met the headman today and everyone residing along the river has vacated to the identified safe shelters.
The district search and rescue team are being activated and alert to direct proceed to the affected areas as and when required.
Meanwhile, the Deputy Commissioner has reported and requested the Joint Secretary Revenue and Disaster Management Department Shillong to take necessary action to pursue with the Brahmaputra Board for the quick implementation of anti-erosion protection works.