225 villages in Maharashtra vulnerable to landslides: GSI study

Kolkata, Feb 28 (PTI) Over 200 villages in Maharashtra have been identified as 'vulnerable to landslide hazard', according to a Geological Survey of India (GSI) study.

In the report released recently, a total of 225 villages were analysed by the GSI based on a request from the Municipal Corporation of Greater Mumbai (MCGM).

Grouping the villages in four classes of vulnerability, it was found that 47 out of the 225 villages were found to be 'most vulnerable to landslide' across four districts in the state.

As many as 103 villages in Raigad district, 45 in Ratnagiri district, 72 villages in Pune district, and five villages in Thane district have been identified as 'vulnerable to landslide hazard'.

The reports were shared with the district officials in Maharashtra.

An official release said the findings are the outcome of two projects of the GSI from 2015 to 2018 for the identification of 'vulnerable inhabited slopes' in parts of Raigad, Ratnagiri, Pune and Thane districts, and 'identification and preliminary assessment of vulnerable inhabited hill slopes' in parts of Mumbai Urban Agglomeration.

The GSI has been carrying out systematic studies of landslides in the Western Ghats since 1980 that can be classified into pre-disaster and post-disaster studies.

Under the National Landslide Susceptibility Mapping programme (NLSM), a landslide susceptibility map of approximately 28,000 sq km area covering the hilly region of Maharashtra will be completed by 2020, the release said.

Till March 2019, approximately 21,500 sq km area has been completed wherein nearly 800 sq km area was identified as high susceptible zone, followed by 7,713 sq km in moderate susceptible zone, it added.

The GSI was set up in 1851 primarily to find coal deposits for the Railways.

Headquartered in Kolkata, the GSI is an attached office of the Ministry of Mines with six regional offices in Lucknow, Jaipur, Nagpur, Hyderabad, Shillong and Kolkata. PTI SCH MM HDA