Villagers relocated amid landslide threats

Published: October 13, 2010
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Over a dozen houses have been struck; tremors felt in the area

Over a dozen houses have been struck; tremors felt in the area

GILGIT: The government has relocated 55 families from a village in Hunza after geologists declared the area “highly perilous,” officials told The Express Tribune on Tuesday.

“We have shifted families from Qadeem Abad village to a safer place as the village has been declared dangerous for living,” said Zafar Taj, deputy commissioner of Hunza. He said that fissures have developed on the surface, raising fears of another landslide in a region stated to be located on the fault line. Over a dozen houses in the area have been struck by landslides over the past three months.

Residents have said that similar fissures had appeared on the surface of Attabad, where a landslide blocked the Hunza River in January, creating a lake that inundated five villages as it expanded. Twenty people had died in the incident and the victims of the tragedy are mostly still living in camps in Hunza.

Earlier, people of Myacher, a village of Nagar, had also vacated their homes following tremors and landslides that damaged 10 houses.

Zafar Taj said that he visited Qadeem Abad after residents complained that wide cracks had developed on the surface and that landslides continued to occur. “After surveying the village, we realised that the situation had turned precarious,” said Taj. “What else could we do but to shift them from the danger zone?” he asked.

Ainul Hayat, a resident of Hussainabad and an engineer by profession, said that the fissure is 4- 5 feet wide, adding that frequent landslides have made the residents vulnerable to impending disaster and that they have not forgotten the Attabad tragedy.

Published in The Express Tribune, October 13th, 2010.

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Reader Comments (1)

  • Naqash Khan
    Oct 14, 2010 - 10:48AM

    Fact of the matter is that the 55 families had been evacuated by the regional council Hunza and Focus Humanitarian Assistance in the month of August. FOCUS has been providing them relief since then.

    It is disheartening to know that an intellectual like Zafar Taj can lie so brazenly despite of being at such a responsible position.

    The reporter could have done justice to his profession by telling the reality instead of fabricating stories and creating unholy alliances with the bureaucrats. Shame!Recommend

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