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Last Updated Friday September 22 2017 07:02 PM IST

16 people feared dead in massive landslide in Arunachal Pradesh

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16 people feared dead in massive landslide in  Arunachal Pradesh Rescue work in progress after eight houses were buried under the debris caused by a massive landslide at Laptap village under Toru Circle of Papum Pare district in Arunachal Pradesh on Tuesday. PTI

Guwahati: Sixteen people died and six more were missing after a mudslide triggered by heavy rains tore through a village in Arunachal Pradesh on Tuesday, officials said.

The landslide hit the village of Laptap in Pamumpare district, about 40 km (25 miles) south of the state capital Itanagar.

According to Sagalee additional deputy commissioner Jalash Pertin, the landslide around 3.30 pm buried the houses at Laptap village.

Rescue operation is on, he said adding there are dim chances of any survivor.

A 35-member NDRF team has already reached the spot and carrying out rescue operations along with volunteers and villagers.

Officials said five bodies have been retrieved so far from the debris.

The district has been receiving incessant rains since the past four days.

"According to preliminary reports, a hill caved in on a human settlement area trapping about two dozen-odd villagers. Locals have retrieved 16 bodies from the area and about six more people are reported to be missing," Nabam Tuki, a local lawmaker, told Reuters by telephone.

"All roads leading to the village are cut off as there are heavy landslides. Medical teams are having a tough time reaching the village.

"We suspect the death toll would mount as no rescue effort is possible now with the weather conditions very bad," Tuki said.

Arunachal Pradesh chief minister Pema Khandu expressed deep shock and grief over the incident and ordered urgent rescue operation to evacuate any survivor.

He announced ex-gratia of Rs 4 lakh each to the next of kins of those killed.

He also asked the administration to provide all necessary assistance like food and medicine to the affected people and shift them to safer locations.

Khandu appealed to people to remain alert and shift from vulnerable places.

He said Arunachal Pradesh has been at the receiving end of nature's fury every year and the best people can do is avoid vulnerable places and stop rampant air cutting and deforestation.

Assam floods

In adjoining Assam, three people died in floods and landslides on Tuesday, taking the death toll in the state to 33 in the past 15 days.

Over 1.2 million people have been affected by floods in over 2,000 villages in the state, the Assam State Disaster Management Authority said in a bulletin. The floodwaters have swamped over 1,00,000 hectares of agricultural land, damaging standing crops, it said.

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