Uttarakhand’s ‘Sinking’ Town Joshimath Declared Disaster-Prone Area

Joshimath has been declared a disaster-prone area with increasing land subsidence and cracks detected.

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On Monday, Chamoli District Magistrate Himanshu Khurana, said that the Joshimath area, a town in Uttarakhand, has been declared a disaster-prone area, with increasing land subsidence and cracks detected.  

He added that two central teams including one from the Union Jal Shakti ministry, would arrive on Monday. He also said that a team set up by the centre will reach Joshimath on Tuesday. He was quoted by ANI saying, “Central Building Research Institute, Roorkee is monitoring the buildings that have developed cracks, tomorrow their team will also be visiting.” 

Action taken so far...  

Earlier on Monday, the district administration said that basic facilities at relief camps had been set up for the affected people, and these camps were being constantly inspected.  


Residents of 68 houses evacutaed  

Uttarakhand Chief Minister Pushkar Singh Dhami said that the Prime Minister had assured the state of all help possible. The CM told ANI that residents of 68 houses which were deemed to be in danger of collapse, have been shifted. He said that efforts are on to shift all the residents of the area. 

An official of the Ministry of Home Affairs told NDTV that 4,000 people have been shifted to safer areas, so far.

What happened at Joshimath? 

On 3 January, residents of the town woke up to see that cracks in their roads had increased in size. Cracks have been detected in 603 buildings. The Secretary of Disaster Management, Ranjit Sinha, told ANI that new cracks had developed and new water sources have emerged in places.

What is land subsidence?  

Land subsidence is a gradual settling or sudden sinking of the earth's surface owing to the subsurface movement of earth materials. The town has now been declared a landslide and subsidence-hit zone. 

Experts had warned that construction work, such as large-scale hydropower projects, could lead to 'land subsidence'.   

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Topics:  Uttarakhand   Chamoli district   Joshimath 

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