By Our Staff Reporter
Guwahati, May 18: Torrential rains and landslides have once again disrupted rail services in southern Assam, Tripura, Manipur and Mizoram, officials said on Wednesday.
Ten people were killed in landslides in Karimganj and Hailakandi districts in Barak valley in Assam due to heavy rains.
Five members of a family were killed in a landslide at Suneicherra in Karimganj district in the wee hours. The landslip, triggered by incessant rains, buried a house on the edge of a hill, killing five people from the same family, superintendent of police PR Kar said.
Among the victims were a man, his wife, their daughter and two sons.
The area has been hit by continuous rains for the past three days.
In neighbouring Hailakandi district, two incidents of landslide killed six persons. The incidents occurred at Lala. A six-year old boy was killed at Ramchandi area, police officials said. The debris fell on two houses where the victims were sleeping early in the morning. Seven persons were also injured in landslides in the district. The NDRF and police have been engaged in rescue and relief operations. Meanwhile, extensive water-logging was reported at various places in Kamrup metro and Cachar districts.
Rail services were again disrupted in southern Assam, Tripura, Manipur and Mizoram.
“Railway workers have been working round-the-clock to clear the debris in many places in southern Assam’s Dima Hasao district. Huge mudslides together with rocks covering a large portion of railway tracks at Fidhing and other places are being cleared,” a Northeast Frontier Railway (NFR) official said.
He said it would take another three or four days to clear the debris and make way for trains. “We are expecting to restore rail services in the region by the end of this week,” he said.
NFR officials and engineers accompanied by district administration officials camped at the spot, 300 km south of Guwahati, to supervise the clearance work.
Due to heavy rains, huge landslides occurred in the Lumding-Badarpur hill section in southern Assam on Monday night.
NFR chief public relations officer Prav Jyoti Sharma said four major trains running between Guwahati and Silchar, including the Silchar-Sealdah Kanchanjunga Express and the Silchar-New Delhi via Guwahati Poorvattar Sampark Kranti Express, were cancelled until the removal of mudslides.
Similar such disruptions of railway operations had occurred for two weeks in the same areas until May 6.
Thousands of passengers, bound for Guwahati and the rest of the country, were left stranded in southern Assam’s Badarpur, Silchar and Lumding areas after the disruption of railway services.
The Guwahati-Silchar railway line is the lifeline for southern Assam comprising four districts, known as Barak Valley, and the mountainous states of Tripura, Manipur and Mizoram.
These states are heavily dependent on this railway line for supply of foodgrain, fertilisers, petroleum products, construction materials and other commodities.
The 437-km Lumding-Silchar and Badarpur-Agartala gauge conversion works, which was sanctioned in 1996, were completed only earlier this year.