Malin Village: Heavy downpour caused landslide
Heavy downpour on 30 July 2014 caused landslide in Malin Village of Ambegaon Taluka killing 41 peoples. The village is some 70 kilometers from Pune and 30 kilometers from famed Bhima Shankar temple.
The landslide buried the whole Malin village. As per the estimates more than 120 people are still trapped.
Notably, Malin village is one of the three high-risk villages in the region marked Ecologically Sensitive Areas by the Kasturirangan Committee report on Western Ghats.
Landslides are common in the hills during the monsoon season. Environmentalists said the area around Malin has been deforested extensively for construction and mining which has increased its vulnerability.
The Kasturirangan panel was set up to study the Gadgil committee report on the Western Ghats. The Kasturirangan Committee had submitted its report in 2013.
Subsequently, the Union ministry of environment and forests (MoEF) notified the recommendations of the report in November 2013. MoEF notified the Malin village as ecologically sensitive and recommended a no-development policy.
Don and Rajpur were the two other villages marked out in Ambegaon taluka, in the notification. These three villages were part of a list of more than 25 hamlets and villages in this taluka alone that were protected under the MoEF notification.
The MoEF notification stated the Kasturirangan Committee report has recommended a no-tolerance policy with respect to highly interventionist and environmentally damaging activities like mining or polluting industries. The committee has highlighted the need for urgent action for protection of biologically rich, diverse and natural landscape of Western Ghats.
Besides Pune district, the MoEF notification identifies villages in Ahmednagar, Dhule, Kolhapur, Nashik, Pune, Raigad, Ratnagiri, Sangli, Sindhudurg and Thane districts in Maharashtra that fall in the ecologically sensitive zones and must be protected against interventionist activities at all costs.
The region of Katraj hill, near Pune, has also seen an immense amount of flattening and quarrying activities in the last two-three years; it has also had landslides last two years.
The Sahyadri hill range has been under threat from exactly the kind of "intervention activities" that the MoEF notification advises against. Malin, as well as other hamlets in the area, lie in this zone.
When: 30 July 2014