Nepal floods, landslide claim 7 lives; several injured

Kathmandu: Floods and landslides triggered by incessant rains in the last 24 hours have claimed seven lives and left several others injured across Nepal, officials said on Monday. The MeT warned of rain for two more days.

At least four persons were killed in Banke district, Superintendent of Police Tek Bahadur Tamang said. Three persons were killed in landslide in Rolpa district.

After the rains, landslides were triggered in the hilly areas while most of the Terai region or plains were waterlogged and hundreds of homes and paddy fields submerged in water, they added.

The Meteorology Department had advised people living across the three big rivers originating in the Himalayas to stay away as the water had crossed the danger level.

Reports from various districts said that several highways across the country were blocked by landslides, leaving commuters stranded.

According to the Ministry of Home Affairs, at least 1,672 persons were killed due to floods and landslide in Nepal in the past seven years.

Meanwhile, the rain and bad weather have stranded over 1,500 Indian pilgrims undertaking the Kailash Mansarovar Yatra in Nepal. The Indian embassy has sought assistance from Kathmandu to evacuate them.

External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj said about 525 pilgrims are stranded in Simikot, 550 in Hilsa and another 500 are stuck in Tibet side.

She said India has requested the Nepal government for army helicopters to evacuate stranded Indian nationals.

In a series of tweets, Swaraj said India has set up hotlines for pilgrims and their family members who will be provided information in Tamil, Telugu, Kannada and Malayalam languages.

The Indian embassy’s emergency helpline number in Kathmandu is +977 985-1107006.

The pilgrimage to Kailash Mansarovar in Tibetan region of China is considered holy by Hindus, Buddhists and Jains. Every year, hundreds of Indians undertake the ‘yatra’ which involves trekking under inhospitable conditions. Kailash Mansarovar is believed to be the seat of lord Shiva. Pilgrims travel at high altitudes of 19,500 feet. The traditional trekking route is inhospitable and rugged.

(With agency inputs)