The multi-agency search operation at Tulip in Manipur, where a massive landslide occurred on the night of June 29, was called off on Wednesday even as five victims remained still missing.
Announcing the decision to call-off the search, Manipur Chief Minister N. Biren Singh told reporters at Imphal that 56 bodies, including personnel of the territorial army, have been retrieved from the site while five victims could not be found despite efforts in the past 20 days.
Following heavy rains, a hillock came down on the night of June 29 and buried an under-construction railway yard at Tupul in Manipur’s Noney district. The railway ward was being constructed as part of the 111km Jiribam-Imphal railway project. A total of 18 persons were rescued on June 29 and 30 from the site while a massive search operation was launched for 61 others.
Army used the wall imaging radars, sniffer dogs and other equipment in search of the missing persons. The search operation was called off even as the army and Manipur government had earlier said that the search would continue till all the missing persons are found.
The victims included personnel of the territorial army, three railway engineers, workers engaged by construction agencies and local villagers.
Railways sign MoU:
The Northeast Frontier Railway (NFR) and Noney district administration signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) on Wednesday with Makhuam village authority, which made some demands including government jobs to family members of the victims.
The NFR agreed to provide contractual jobs to family members of the victims till a permanent job is provided and carry out a detailed assessment for damages caused by landslides for compensation, among others.
“The other points of MoU included the Railways to hold extensive discussion with IIT Guwahati, Manipur University and other like-minded institutions to have a detailed investigation for working out how the hill slopes adjacent to railways boundaries in the Jiribam-Imphal project can better be monitored so that early warning can be given for any future untoward event. Environment Impact Assessment and Social Impact Assessment shall be revisited in the light of this landslide,” an official statement said.