Monsoon rains kill 17 more in Nepal

July 15th, 2011 - 3:01 pm ICT by IANS  

Kathmandu, July 15 (IANS) At least 17 people were killed in Nepal as monsoon rains lashed villages, triggering landslides and causing rivers to flood their surroundings.

In the worst incident, 10 members of a family died in western Rukum district, once the bastion of the Maoist insurgency, as their hut was buried under a landslide and the remoteness of the village made rescue work impossible.

A 53-year-old man, his wife, son, daughter-in-law, daughter, son-in-law and four grandchildren died in Purtimakada village, which can be reached only after an eight-hour trek from the main town in the district.

Three members of another family also died in the same village in the landslide that occurred around 10.30 p.m. Thursday, police said.

In Nuwakot district in central Nepal, a man, his wife and their one-year-old daughter died when swirling river waters carried away their hut while a young girl drowned in Parbat village.

Nearly 50 people have died so far as monsoon started early in Nepal and rains were plentiful.

In southern Nepal, after a welcome respite, the Saptakosi river, known as the sorrow of Nepal’s neighbouring Bihar state due to the flood havocs it has caused in the past, was once again posing major concern.

The barrage built to control the river waters reported flow of over 161,800 cusecs, and 22 of the 56 gates have been opened to release the water.

In 2008, a breach in the embankment of the river in Nepal caused nearly three million people in Bihar to be rendered homeless.

This year, north Bihar is already reeling under floods and a resurgent Kosi would magnify the disaster.

(Sudeshna Sarkar can be contacted at sudeshna.s@ians.in)

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