A two-storey building hangs precariously at the edge of a hill and within seconds, it slides down along with the mud. This scary video of the landslide in Kodagu shows how dangerous the situation in the district has turned.
Luckily, no one was in the building at the time of the incident. Officials with the district administration said that people left their homes and headed to the hilltop when the rains lashed the villages.
According to the Deputy Commissioner of Kodagu district Srividya P, massive landslides were witnessed in several parts of Kodagu, even as roads and walkways were completely inundated by rains.
Around 300 people residing in Kattikeri and Tanthitala villages near Madikeri left their homes and are now perched on top of the Doddakunda hill waiting to be rescued.
Early on Thursday, 16 August morning, the water from the River Koothuvalai flooded the villages. Water from this tributary of River Cauvery began gushing into Kattikeri and Tanthitala, flooding the homes, forcing people to evacuate.
“The houses are constructed on slopes and most of them are carved out in mud paths. Due to the heavy rain, the soil loosened and the houses began falling down from the slopes due to the landslide. Many houses were on the verge of sliding down and are balanced precariously off a slope,” she added.
The Army personnel have swung into action and helicopters have been deployed from Mangaluru to rescue the stranded residents.
“The helicopters are unable to reach because of the force of the wind and heavy rain. Those on Doddakunda have to be rescued. Since the villages at the base of the hill have been completely inundated by water, it is becoming difficult to cross over and rescue them by boat as the chances of another landslide is high,” she said.
In Makkandur nearly 400 people were rendered homeless following landslides and flash floods. The district administration has set up rehabilitation centre in the Makkandur school.
“An 88-year-old woman was stranded and there was no one to rescue her. Everyone was running towards the rehabilitation centre. No proper facilities had been arranged for them. The old woman walked for 4 km and she reached the rehab centre safely,” an official with the district administration said.
In Karadikodagu a mother and her child were stranded at their home due to the rain, since the child was only 20 days old they were unable to leave the house. The Revenue Department officials later deployed coracles and rescued the mother and child.
Relief camps or 'ganji centres' have been set up to provide shelter and food to people.
Traffic was stranded in Bhagamandala in Kodagu district due to the rains, and many roads have been blocked. Connectivity to places including Siddapura, Somwarpet and Suntikoppa were affected. Several fields were flooded in Kodagu due to the overflowing of Lakshmana Theertha river.
All educational institutions have been shut down by the District Collector. Tourists have been urged not to visit the district.
(This story was published in an arrangement with The News Minute)
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