|A lady being rescued from the Khewadara landslide. While she, along with four others escaped with their lives, 14 people were killed in the house wiped out by a slide there on the intervening night of 23-24 July 2011.|
14 KILLED IN ONE HOME WHERE VILLAGERS HAD TAKEN SHELTER
NAMCHI, 24 June: ‘Monsoon activity’, which had subsided over the week, opened with ferocious intensity last night, especially over West Sikkim, where it cast a pall of gloom, hitting the Gyalshing sub-division with a heart-rending casualty list of 16 deaths, 14 of them in one home at Khewadara, about 12 kms from Gyalshing, where neighbours had gathered to escape a minor slip elsewhere in the village.
Khewadara, Ward No.5 of Lingchum -Tikjuk GPU under Yangthang Constituency, carries the most tragic tale of the night. It was here in the home of Indra Maya Gurung that 14 villagers were buried alive, with only five of the 19 who had taken shelter there escaping alive. The village has only five houses in the area, two which have been completely damaged, including the one which the casualties took place.
According to one of the survivors, at around 11.30 p.m. last night, when a minor landslide hit the village, 19 of them gathered in the house of Indra Maya Gurung believing it to be a safer alternative. Their decision proved fatal because moments after they had collected there, a landslide peeled off from about 100 meters above and pulverised the house. Of the 19 people in the house at the time, only 5, including Indra Maya Gurung, made it out alive. They have all sustained injuries.