A woman cries as she arrives at a hospital in Kathmandu,
where loved ones are undergoing treatment after being
rescued from the landslide. REUTERS/Navesh Chitrakar
A massive landslide triggered by heavy rains in northeast
Nepal has killed at least eight people, injured 40 and buried
dozens of homes, officials said.
The landslide created a mud dam blocking the Sunkoshi river
near Jure in the Sindhupalchowk district, about 60km
northeast of Kathmandu, heightening fears of downstream
floods that could reach as far as Bihar in eastern India.
Nepal's army spokesman, Jagadish Pokharel, said efforts were
being made to break down the dam to avoid floods.
Officials said eight bodies have been recovered so far from
the debris of collapsed houses.
Witnesses said mud and rocks came crashing down, blocking the
river and creating a 3 km-long artificial lake that has
inundated part of the Arniko highway that connects Kathmandu
Residents in downstream villages have been asked to evacuate
as the mud dam could collapse at any time, a police officer
"The landslide has caused huge damage. We cannot make any
estimates of the number of deaths now. We are looking for
other people who might be trapped," another police officer,
Bharat Bahadur Bohara, told Reuters from the site.
Steep hills and heavy rains are making search and rescue
operations difficult, home ministry officials said.
Monsoon rains that start in mid-June and continue through
September are crucial for farm-dependent Nepal, one of the 10
poorest countries in the world. But scores of people die
every year in landslides and floods caused by heavy
Heavy rains in June last year caused rivers and lakes to
burst their banks, inundating towns and villages and killing
thousands in the neighbouring Indian state of Uttarakhand and
dozens in the border district of Darchula in west Nepal.